Josiah awarded for 3rd time in prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition!

We are so pleased to share that Josiah has been awarded once again in the 2017 Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition (WPY53)! The competition seeks to discover and showcase the world’s best nature photography, and the panel of esteemed judges felt that our young photographer’s black and white image of a monkey moth caterpillar in Thailand was one of the 100 best images from nearly 50,000 they judged from 92 countries!  

Raindrops are trapped in the hairy coat of a monkey moth caterpillar as it makes its way down a tree on a rainy day in Thailand. “Raindrops” was photographed by 11yr old Josiah Launstein and has gone on to be awarded in the 2017 Wildlife Photographer of the Year (WPY53) competition. It will be released as a Fine Art Limited Edition Print in November, 2017.

This is Josiah’s 3rd time being awarded in this prestigious competition in the past three years! What makes this time more unique is his winning image was captured while in Thailand filming a short film with Nikon (see the full story and film here).

Here’s the story behind the picture in Josiah’s words:

This summer I got to go to Thailand for a film production about my wildlife photography. I couldn’t believe how many moths and caterpillars there were! I also couldn’t believe how much it rains in Thailand! One day, it was raining so hard we couldn’t do any filming so I had some time off with my dad to explore. Before we could get very far, I found a couple of hairy caterpillars crawling along in the rain right outside our room at our mountain lodge. I loved the way they looked silhouetted against the bright overcast sky with the raindrops in their hair. My dad and I didn’t bring all of our gear because of all the travel, so I used my 200-500mm lens and got as close as it allowed me to focus. I wanted to make the image all about the water droplets and the caterpillar’s awesome hair, and was so happy I was able to create the picture I had in mind!

Josiah coming up with his winning composition while photographing caterpillars off the deck of our lodge high in the mountains of northern Thailand.

As one of the awarded images in Wildlife Photographer of the Year, Josiah’s “Raindrops” will go on exhibit in the Natural History Museum in the UK beginning October 20, 2017. The exhibition also travels the world, being showcased in national museums and galleries in more than 50 countries.

Although we weren’t able to attend the awards ceremony in person, our friends Gerry and Ashleigh Scully sent us these pictures of Josiah’s image on exhibit in the Natural History Museum:

Josiah’s “Raindrops” on exhibit in the National History Museum, London, UK.

Close-up of Josiah’s awarded image in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year 53 exhibition. You can view this information more clearly on the Natural History Museum’s website.

One of the special aspects of the awards this year is our friend Ashleigh Scully was also awarded alongside Josiah with two images, one of which went on to be named the category winner, launching Ashleigh into the top three in contention to be named Young Wildlife Photographer of the Year! Although she didn’t take the top prize this year, she will surely be a contender again in the future given her vision and skills behind the lens. In fact, Ashleigh and Josiah were both awarded in Nature’s Best Windland Smith Rice International Photography Awards this year, and Ashleigh went on to be named Youth Photographer of the Year (only the 3rd young woman to receive this honour following Gabby Salazar and our own Jenaya Launstein!).

Here’s Ashleigh and Josiah photographing near our home outside of Pincher Creek, Alberta this summer, with WPY Alumnus Josh Burch (UK) and Josiah’s sister, Jenaya.

One incredibly talented group of young wildlife and conservation photographers! These photographers have won or been awarded in virtually every major international competition out there!

We are so grateful for this recognition for Josiah and especially for the incredible impact the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition has had over its history in showcasing the best wildlife and conservation photography in the world. It’s an honour for Josiah to be included alongside so many other incredible photographers and within the conservation efforts the competition empowers.