Announcing the winner of’s Photo of the Year 2019


This year,’s Underwater Photography Editor Nick Robertson-Brown is joined by UK-based Tour Operator Scuba Travel’s resident Underwater Photo Pro Mario Vitalini to choose a winner of our Photo of the Year award. Nick and Mario had a tough job on their hands to pick an overall champion for 2019; the winners of the monthly contest provided 12 fantastic images to select from, including marine life big and small, wrecks, images using advanced photo techniques, and examples of animal behaviour. But after much deliberation, and in reverse order….

3rd Place

November’s winner: Face to Face by François Baelen

Photo of the Year 2019

Judge’s Comments

Nick: “This wide-angle shot really captures the best of underwater moments. The image of the whale, head-on, is amazing but the reflection on the surface creates a great composition.”

Mario: “This pic caught my eye straight away. The sharpness and contrast are incredible but the reflection, in my opinion, is what makes the image.

Even not having eye contact, the fact that the subject is clearly swimming towards the camera makes it. My only comment is the second whale hanging behind. A bit more separation would be ideal.”

2nd Place

June’s winner: The Rider by Alex Permiakov

Photo of the Year 2019

Judge’s Comments

Nick: “It is the contrast of light and shadows, with the subject standing out amongst the structures of the nudibranch, that make this image so powerful.”

Mario: “For me, this image is all about the lighting. I love the slight backlight brings out the texture of the Nudi gills but at the same time light the shrimp nicely. The sharpness of the eyes is incredible and the whole image works very well.”

1st Place

April’s winner: Red Carpet by Glenn Valenzona

Photo of the Year 2019

Judge’s Comments

Nick: “When I first looked at this image, I was blown away by the contrast of colour and light. There is a sense of movement from the spiraling body form. It really is a great shot.”

Mario: “I love the movement and fluidity of the subject as well as the beautiful lighting technique. The way the photographer lit the edges of the flatworm, bringing out the texture is incredible. I particularly like the way the face was brought out by a splash of light on the underside of the subject.”

Congratulations from all of the Scubaverse team to our winner and runners-up. Thank you to everyone that entered in 2019. We hope to see plenty more of your images in 2020!

Prizes include Mares diving equipment and travel vouchers from Scuba Travel!

For your chance to win the 2020 title, you simply need to enter your images each month here:

Good Luck! would like to say a big thank you to our Photo of the Year’s sponsors, Mares and Scuba Travel.

Team Scubaverse

Team Scubaverse

Team Scubaverse manages the Scubaverse website

scroll to top