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iPhone Photography Awards show power of smartphone

Stunning images captured on iPhone and iPads, demonstrate the power of smartphone photography

If there was any doubt that smartphones were capable of capturing professional-quality images to rival those from ‘real’ cameras, the iPhone Photography Awards should shatter that illusion immediately. Open to anyone shooting on an iPhone, iPad or iPod, the competition shows how Apple’s kit can be used to take some breathtaking shots.

The rules for the competition are simple: everything has to be shot on an Apple device and can only be processed using iOS apps, not desktop applications. iPhone add-on lenses can be used, although this is fair, as it’s still the device’s processor and sensor that are responsible for the final image.

Awards were dished out in 19 different categories, including animals, architecture, flowers, food, landscape, panorama, people and travel. There was also an overall prize. Each category winner received an Apple Watch Sport and a gold bar.

The iPhone Photography Awards launched in 2007 alongside the first iPhone, although it’s fair to say that advancements in camera technology and iOS apps has elevated what’s possible with mobile devices. In particular, we think that the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus have some of the best cameras, with their large sensors helping to produce consistent quality with low image noise.

Anyone interested in applying for the 2016 awards can submit their entries now, with entry costs ranging from $3.50 for one image up to $57.50 for 25 images. Enough about the details and on to a selection of the photos: you can check out all of the winners and runners-up on the iPhone Photography Awards site.

The overall winners

Michal Koralewski from Poland won overall for this stunning shot of an accordion player in black and white. We’re impressed with the texture, lighting and contrast in this image.

David Craik from the UK came 2nd overall for this shot of starlings that flew in to grab the crumbs off of his table. We have to say that this is our favourite photo of the bunch, with the starling taking off freeze-framed in perfect detail. After the first bird landed and I saw the shadow on the white wall behind it,” he explained, “I knew this was a great image to be captured. Now it was just a case of operating the iPhone properly and finding the best composition.”

In third place was this rather spectacular shot from Yvonne Lu who lives in the US. Almost like a Jack Vettriano painting, Lu couldn’t resist taking the shot. “I also found the romantic, vintage feel very entrancing. The two looked as if they could be coming back from a movie set,” she said.

A choice selection of other photos

As good as the winners are, there were plenty of stunning shots in every category. We’ve put together a selection of our favourite shots here.

Sephi Bergerson, winner Animals

Jen Pollack, 2nd place Nature

Andre Malerba, winner Panorama

Heather Goss, winner Seasons

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