Manu Brabo of Associated Press (AP) won first prize in the Spot News category of the Pictures of the Year International competition, as POYi’s judging marathon got under way this week. Brian Snyder of Reuters, Carolyn Kaster of AP, and Chip Somodevilla of Getty Images, all won top prizes in campaign photography categories. Ng Han Guan (AP) won the top prize for Feature image.
Those categories are all part of the POYi News Division. The remaining News Division categories, including Newspaper Photographer of the Year, will be judged this week. Categories for the Sports and Reportage divisions will be judged next week, while Editing Division and Multimedia division categories will be judged between February 18 and February 26.
Pictures from the war in Syria dominated the Spot News category. Brabo won the top prize for his photograph of a grieving man cradling the body of his son, who was killed in an attack by the Syrian army in Aleppo on October 3. Second and third prize winners were Goran Tomasevic of Reuters and and Narciso Contreras, who is represented by Polaris. Both won for images from Syria.
Somodevilla won the top prize in the Campaign Picture Story category for a portfolio titled “The Last Campaign,” featuring images that captured the spirit and energy of President Barack Obama’s last weeks on the campaign trail before the November 2012 election. Runners up were Adam Dean of Panos Pictures and Brian Snyder of Reuters. (POYi posts the winning images, but does not announce names of winners until all judging is completed.)
Snyder won first prize in the Presidential Campaign 2012 category for a single image of Mitt Romney and his aids reflected in a window at a campaign event in North Canton, Ohio. The image shows Romney looking isolated and pensive, with his campaign staffers swirling about him. Runners up in the category were Callie Shell and Damon Winter.
Carolyn Kaster won first prize in the Campaign 2012 category, for an image of a female biker flirting at an Ohio diner with Vice President Joe Biden. The biker, who sidled up to Biden, appears to be sitting in Biden’s lap (though she actually wasn’t). As she and Biden whisper to each other, her two companions sit nearby, looking askance at each other. Second place prize went to Andrew Harnik of the Washington Times. Third place went to Allison Joyce of Getty Images.
Ng Han Guan won the Feature image prize for a photograph of glum-looking North Korean commuters, photographed through the window of a city bus in the capital, Pyongyang. (AP has had unprecedented access to North Korea since it set up a bureau there more than a year ago.) Andrew Biraj of Reuters won second place, while Aaron Huey took third place.
Portrait and Portrait Series categories will be judged today.