Now in its eleventh year, the Sony World Photography Awards is once again calling for submissions as the 2018 competition opens.

The 2018 Sony World Photography Awards, which is now open for entries, sees the introduction of two challenging new categories in the Professional competition, ‘Creative’ and ‘Discovery’, and an important new opportunity for award-winners to secure a grant to fund future photographic projects.

Created by the World Photography Organisation, the Sony World Photography Awards is the world’s largest photography competition. As an authoritative voice in the industry, the awards celebrate the very best that photography has to offer. Winners of the awards are given vast exposure, making it a worthwhile opportunity for all photographers that choose to enter.

Donkey by Frederik Buyckx. A donkey is getting up after rolling in the snow in the mountains in Albania.

Commenting on the Awards’ impact, 2017 Sony World Photography Awards winner Frederik Buyckx said: “Being named Photographer of the Year has given me more exposure than I could ever have imagined. It has opened lots of new doors but, just as importantly, the award has also encouraged me to keep on working on my personal projects.”

Shepherd by Frederik Buyckx. In the North of Montenegro a shepherd is walking to his herd of sheep with a self made broom in his hand. The broom was used to wipe off the snow lying on the back of the sheep

The new ‘Creative’ and ‘Discovery’ categories are designed to discover a new style of photography that would not normally be seen in the competition. The judges want to embrace photographers working at the cutting-edge of the medium and will specifically look to reward originality, experimentation and imagination in these categories.

To pursue their commitment to create more opportunities, the Awards’ have introduced a new grant programme for those participating in the Professional and Student Focus competition. This follows from a successful pilot with three 2016 Sony World Photography Awards Professional category winners: Amélie Labourdette, Maroesjka Lavigne and Nikola Linares.

Sony Grant recipient, Maroesjka Lavigne, explores the pristine lands of Namibia and Iceland in her series of images

Selected winners of the 2018 Professional categories will receive a $7000 grant to enable them to pursue personal photographic projects. In addition to this, shortlisted photographers from the Student Focus competition will each be given $3500 to work together on a new photographic commission set by Sony and the World Photography Organisation.

Featuring a $25,000 reward for the grand prize winner and $5,000 for the winner of the Open category – on top of Sony imaging equipment, which all category winners of the Professional, Open, Youth and Student Focus competitions will receive – the competition is open to anyone to enter.

To find out more details about the competition, as well as how to enter, visit www.worldphoto.org.