Tuesday August 14, 2018

6 Filipino photographers recognized in 2018 Sony World Photography Awards

A stunning shot in the dunes by Filipino photographer Don Ferdinand Tabbun. This photo was shortlisted in the Open, Culture, category of the 2018 Sony World Photography Awards. (Source:

THE judges of the 2018 Sony World Photography Awards honored February 28 the work of six Filipino photographers by shortlisting and commending their photographs as the top 50 in the world in the Awards’ Open and Youth competitions.

Produced by the World Photography Organisation, the Sony World Photography Awards is the world’s most diverse photography competition. The 11th edition saw a record breaking 320,000 submissions by photographers from more than 200 countries and territories, presenting some of the world’s finest contemporary photography captured over the past year.

The international range of entries display a huge diversity of imagery in terms of genre, style and subject matter across the Awards’ four competitions: Professional, Open, Youth and Student Focus.

The Open competition, which rewards the best single image across 10 categories, features three Filipino photographers on the shortlist. A further two from across Philippines have been placed top 50 in the world (commended).

The Youth competition featured one Filipino photographer shortlisted in the top 10.

Recognizing a huge diversity of work, the judges placed the following Filipino photographers:

Open shortlist

The shortlisted images across the Open competition are drawn from a range of inspirations. The infinite and yet challenging possibilities of motion and cultural photography have attracted the photographers from the region.

The annual camel festival in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) attracted Don Ferdinand Tabbun, a Filipino based in UAE, for a stunning shot in the dunes, and Jomel Bartolome, based in Mandaluyong City, for a dynamic image capturing divers.

On being shortlisted, Tabbun said: "Being one of the shortlist is a rare event for me as a photographer. Now I can show my art to the world and be a part of the photography exhibition in London.”

Lastly, Manny Fajutag, who is based in Abu Dhabi, UAE, and former Open Travel category winner in the 2013 Sony World Photography Awards, returned to this year’s competition, succeeding in the Motion category with the image Spiral, an impressive shot of an aerobatic airshow.


The judges of the Sony World Photography Awards also commended the images of three photographers in the Awards’ Open competition, honoring them as the top 50 entries in their categories. They are:

* Don Ferdinand Tabbun, Motion (Filipino nationality based in the UAE)

* Allan Borebor, Motion, (Manila)

* Virgilio Liberato, Portraiture, (San Juan City, Manila)

Youth shortlist

This competition saw a diverse range of entries from 12-19-year-old photographers who submitted one image on the theme of "Your environment."

Among thousands of entries, Alannee May Noel was shortlisted. Alannee May Noel is a 16-year-old Filipino photographer and visual artist born in Cebu, Philippines, and based in Clearwater, Tampa Bay, Florida, United States of America. She studies at the Pinellas County Center for the Arts at Gibbs Sr. High School in St. Petersburg, Florida.

May Noel uses her Filipino heritage and sense of wonder in the world as her inspiration.

On being shortlisted, she said: “When I was notified, I was left out of breath! I couldn't believe it, and I was so incredibly happy. I hope this will lead to more recognition as I continue on with my artistic endeavors. It is always amazing to feel your art being appreciated.”

The work of the shortlisted and commended photographers will be exhibited at the Sony World Photography Awards 2018 Exhibition in London from April 20 to May 6. The Open competition winners will be announced on March 20, and the overall and Professional category winners will be revealed on April 19.

For further information, contact the Press team, World Photography Organisation at / +44 (0) 20 7886 3043 / 3049. (PR)