Press photographers are always on the frontline of what is happening around the world. Whether it be politics, protest or war, being a press photographer requires bravely as well as skill and the best in the business have been honoured as the winners of the 61st World Press Photo awards have been announced.
Launched in 1955, the or World Press Photo organisation has grown rapidly and is widely regarded as the most prestigious awards in the field of press photography. 2018’s jury selected a striking image taken by Venezuelan photographer Ronald Schemidt’s image as the World Press Photo of the Year. The extreme image captured a protester on fire during violent clashes with riot police at rally against President Nicolás Maduro, in Caracas, Venezuela.
2018’s contest saw over 70,000 entries submitted by over 4,000 press photographers from 125 different countries. You can find out more about the awards here, but let’s share more thought-provoking imagery from the other commended and shortlisted entries…
Adam Ferguson: Aisha (14) stands for a portrait in Maiduguri, Borno State, Nigeria. After being kidnapped by Boko Haram, Aisha was assigned a suicide bombing mission, but managed to escape and find help instead of detonating the bombs.
Roger Turesson: A crowd awaits the start of the Pyongyang Marathon at the Kim Il-sung Stadium, while an official guards the exit, in Pyongyang, North Korea.
George Steinmetz: Rapidly rising incomes in China have led to a changing diet and increasing demand for meat, dairy and processed foods. China needs to make use of some 12 percent of the world’s arable land to feed nearly 19% of the global population. New technologies and agricultural reform offer a partial solution, but problems remain as farmers and the young flock to work in cities, leaving an aging rural population, and as land becomes contaminated by industry.
Espen Rasmussen: Tommy Kinder, a patriot and proud of his country, poses with his rifle in his home in Fort Creek, West Virginia.
Neil Aldridge: A young southern white rhinoceros, drugged and blindfolded, is about to be released into the wild in Okavango Delta, Botswana, after its relocation from South Africa for protection from poachers.
Thomas P. Peschak: A historic photograph of an African penguin colony, taken in the late 1890s, is a stark contrast to the declining numbers seen in 2017 in the same location, on Halifax Island, Namibia. The colony once numbered more than 100,000 penguins.
Kadir van Lohuizen: People wait to sort through waste for recyclable and saleable material, as a garbage truck arrives at the Olusosun landfill, in Lagos, Nigeria.
Luca Locatelli: Ruud Veloo monitors an experimental photobioreactor, in which light fuels the growth of microalgae, which are used to produce proteins and lipids, the basis of many food chains, at AlgaePARC, Wageningen, the Netherlands.
Daniel Beltra: A remnant of rainforest stands in fields cleared for agriculture, near the Tapajós River, Brazilian Amazon.
Ivor Prickett: Iraqi Special Forces soldiers survey the aftermath of an attack by an ISIS suicide car bomber, who managed to reach their lines in the Andalus neighborhood, one of the last areas to be liberated in eastern Mosul.
Javier Arcenillas Luz: Roberto Arturo Adonay Antonio, allegedly a member of Mara 18, an international criminal organization that originated as a Los Angeles street gang, arrives at a pre-trial detention center in Usulután, El Salvador.
Thomas P. Peschak: Rockhopper penguins live up to their name as they navigate the rugged coastline of Marion Island, a South African Antarctic Territory in the Indian Ocean.
Ami Vitale: Mary Lengees, one of the first female keepers at the Reteti Elephant Sanctuary in northern Kenya, caresses Suyian, the sanctuary’s first resident, who was rescued in 2016, when she was just four weeks old. Women at Reteti are seen as bringing important nurturing skills into the workforce.