The winners and honourably-mentioned images were recently announced for Nikon's 2015 Small World Photomicrography Competition. Submissions were collected from professionals and amateurs alike; the contest is open to anyone with a passion for microscopy and photography. With a rich pool of applicants from 83 different countries submitting over 2,000 entries, the competition was incredibly tough and the calibre of photography that accumulated certainly reflects this. Winners were selected based on artistic quality as well as exceptional scientific technique.
The winning image, seen above, was submitted by Raph Grimm from Queensland, Australia, and gives us a glimpse into the world as seen through the eye of a honeybee. The image took over 4 hours to capture, and the visually striking photograph is a testament to Grimm's painstaking technical labours. While bee populations continue to decline worldwide, Grimm hopes his image can serve as a voice for the tiny pollinators that are so vital to global agriculture, and inspire us to continue to respect and protect our planet.
Regarded as one of the leading platforms for “showcasing the beauty and complexity of life through the lens of a light microscope,” Nikon's Small World offers a rarely seen perspective of the microscopic world. For more incredible photos, you can check out some of the previous year's winning entries online.
Above: Winning Image- The eye of a honeybee (Apis mellifera) covered in dandelion pollen (120x) by Ralph Claus Grimm, Queensland, Australia
6th Place- Spore capsule of a moss (Bryum sp.) by Henri Koskinen, Helsinki, Finland
12th Place- Developing sea mullet (Mugil cephalus) embryos (40x) by Hannah Sheppard-Brennand, New South Wales, Australia
Image of Distinction- Detail of ancient Chinese pottery from the Song Dynasty (960-1126 AD) (4x) by Yvonne (Yi-Chieh) Lu, New York, USA
Image of Distinction- The feeding structure (radula) of a limpet, a kind of aquatic snail (40x) by Michael Crutchley, Wales, United Kingdom
10th Place- Clam shrimp (Cyzicus mexicanus), live specimen (25x) by Ian Gardiner, Alberta, Canada
Image of Distinction- Jaws and head of a long-jawed spider (Metellina sp.) (10x) by Geir Drange, Asker, Norway