When it comes to the world of close up macro photography, there’s one contest every pro wants to win. The Nikon Small World contest is seen by many as the pinnacle in the close up photography genre and the winners of the 2019 awards have just been announced.
The competition has actually been running since 1975 so was celebrating its 45th anniversary and this year’s awards saw over 2,000 entries from scientists in almost 100 countries. The overall winner was announced as duo Teresa Zgoda and Teresa Kugler, who took the top honour for a breath-taking image of photo of a turtle embryo, which was captured using fluorescence and stereo microscopy techniques.
In second place was this spectacular frame by Dr. Igor Siwanowicz which shows depth-colour coded projections of three stentors (single-cell freshwater protozoans). To put the scale of the image in perspective, the subjects have been magnified 40 times.
Ranking third in the Nikon Small World contest was this, almost alien frame created by Daniel Smith Paredes and Dr. Bhart-Anjan S. Bhullar. The image is of an alligator embryo developing nerves and skeleton captured using 10x Objective Lens Magnification.
Believe it or not, this little critter is a male mosquito and was captured by Jan Rosenboom, who used a 6.3x (Objective Lens Magnification) and the technique of focus stacking to create the amazing front-to-back sharpness in the frame and place fourth in the competition.
No prizes for guessing the subject that won American photographer Caleb Foster fifth place in the competition. Entitled ‘Snowflake’ the image was captured using a transmitted light technique and 4x (Objective Lens Magnification).
Those afraid of spiders should look away now as the sixth placed image in the Small World awards sports eight legs. This Small white hair spider was captured by Spanish photographer Javier Rupérez using reflected light and focus stacking technique.
Taking seventh place in the competition was this beautiful frame from Dr. Guillermo López, who is based in Alicante, Spain. Guillermo used focus stacking to capture the Chinese red carnation stamen.
Any guesses what this subject is? Well, taking eighth place is this close up image of a water droplet, which was captured by Garzon Christian from France and using 8x (Objective Lens Magnification).
Check the razor-like sharpness of this frame by Ukrainian photographer Andrei Savitsky. The beautiful frame of a Tulip bud cross section placed ninth in the competition.
Rounding out the top ten in the Nikon Small World competition was this celestial-esque frame of some BPAE cells in telophase stage of mitosis, which was captured by Jason M. Kirk using a Confocal with Enhanced Resolution that magnified the subject 63 times.