© Tino Solomon
London-based photo enthusiast Tino Solomon secured an Sony Alpha 7 Mark II camera and a place at the Sony World Photography Awards Exhibition at Somerset House, London, next month.
Commenting on the winning shot, Solomon – who works as a doctor – said: ‘The image captures the Milky Way galaxy that rises over the Darwaza crater in the Karakum Desert, northwest Turkmenistan.
‘Two explorers peer into its fiery depths, known by the local Turkmen as the “door to hell”.’
Solomon – whose image was chosen as the single best photo by a Brit across the ten categories of the Open competition – added: ‘In 1971 Soviet scientists discovered an underground cavern with gas accumulation.
‘It was set on fire to avoid a toxic release into nearby villages and in the hope it would burn out within days… yet 45 years later, it continues to burn.
‘[It is] often described as the world’s most beautiful ecological disaster.’
Second place in the UK segment of the competition went to Mike Odwyer, while third place was awarded to Stuart Cripps.
The best single image by an Irish photographer © Christopher Roche
© Mike Odwyer