Winners of this year’s international Birth Photography Awards revealed


Photographers from around the world have captured the wondrous, miraculous moment of birth – in all its raw and unglamorous glory – in a striking series of images.

This year’s winners of the annual Birth Photographer of the Year Awards are typically powerful and breathtakingly intimate, documenting the agony and the ecstasy of childbirth in close detail. 

The global contest, in collaboration with Atkins Lab, was founded by award-winning birth photographer Lacey Barratt as a way to further legitimise the stunning and intricate art of birth photography.

Lacey, 34, from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, has been a passionate birth photographer for 11 years and was one of fourteen experienced judges to pick the winners of the awards.

Photographers from around the world have captured the wondrous, miraculous moment of birth – in all its raw and unglamorous glory – in a striking series of images. Colby Tulachnanh, a photographer from the USA, caught the agony of childbirth as one mother was helped through her home water birth

This year's winners of the annual Birth Photographer of the Year Awards are typically powerful and breathtakingly intimate, documenting the agony and the ecstasy of childbirth in close detail. PIctured, Leona Darnell, based in the US, captures a father and mother smiling at one another following the birth of their child

This year’s winners of the annual Birth Photographer of the Year Awards are typically powerful and breathtakingly intimate, documenting the agony and the ecstasy of childbirth in close detail. PIctured, Leona Darnell, based in the US, captures a father and mother smiling at one another following the birth of their child

The global contest, in collaboration with Atkins Lab, was founded by world renowned and award-winning birth photographer Lacey Barratt. Pictured, Rianna Cross showcases a mother crying in joy as her family surround her following her water birth

The global contest, in collaboration with Atkins Lab, was founded by world renowned and award-winning birth photographer Lacey Barratt. Pictured, Rianna Cross showcases a mother crying in joy as her family surround her following her water birth

Lacey created the competition as a way to further legitimise the stunning and intricate art of birth photography. Pictured, Colby Tulachanh, from New York captured a relative gently holding a newborn while the mother observes in the background

Lacey created the competition as a way to further legitimise the stunning and intricate art of birth photography. Pictured, Colby Tulachanh, from New York captured a relative gently holding a newborn while the mother observes in the background

First place was awarded to Laura Brink, from the Queensland, Australia, second place was presented to Rianna Cross, also from Queensland, Australia, and third place was granted to Colby Tulachanh, from New York.

With 356 entries snapped by birth photographers from around the world – including Brazil, Portugal, France, Germany, Australia and New Zealand – mother-of-five Lacey felt it was important to showcase the top images of the competition.

She said: ‘It was important to host a competition because there are so many other incredible competitions in the world, but they are not specific to birth photographers. So we often get lumped in with documentary, photojournalism, and wedding documentary categories. 

Lacey, 34, from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, has been a passionate birth photographer for 11 years and was one of fourteen experienced judges to pick the winners of the awards. Pictured, excited relatives meet a newborn in this snap taken by Laura Brink in Australia

Lacey, 34, from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, has been a passionate birth photographer for 11 years and was one of fourteen experienced judges to pick the winners of the awards. Pictured, excited relatives meet a newborn in this snap taken by Laura Brink in Australia

First place was awarded to Laura Brink, from the Queensland, Australia, second place was presented to Rianna Cross, also from Queensland, Australia, and third place was granted to Colby Tulachanh, from New York. Pictured, a mother and her newborn in an image by Twyla Ellis, who is based in Colorado

First place was awarded to Laura Brink, from the Queensland, Australia, second place was presented to Rianna Cross, also from Queensland, Australia, and third place was granted to Colby Tulachanh, from New York. Pictured, a mother and her newborn in an image by Twyla Ellis, who is based in Colorado

Laura Brink, from Australia, again captured the first seconds of new life in all their raw glory in this fascinating photograph

Laura Brink, from Australia, again captured the first seconds of new life in all their raw glory in this fascinating photograph

A woman sits with her hands on her head during a water birth in a photograph taken by Montana-based Lindsey Erin Ellis

A mother breast feeds her baby, pictured, in a snap captured by Colby Tulachanh, from New York

A woman sits with her hands on her head during a water birth in a photograph taken by Montana-based Lindsey Erin Ellis, pictured left, and a mother breast feeds her baby, pictured right, in a snap captured by Colby Tulachanh, from New York

With 356 entries snapped by birth photographers from around the world - including Brazil, Portugal, France, Germany, Australia and New Zealand - mother-of-five Lacey felt it was important to showcase the top images of the competition. Pictured, Laura Brink captures a hospital birth

With 356 entries snapped by birth photographers from around the world – including Brazil, Portugal, France, Germany, Australia and New Zealand – mother-of-five Lacey felt it was important to showcase the top images of the competition. Pictured, Laura Brink captures a hospital birth

In this photograph, Laura Brink, from Australia, caught the miracle of birth in all its raw glory as a child was being delivered by experts at a hospital

In this photograph, Laura Brink, from Australia, caught the miracle of birth in all its raw glory as a child was being delivered by experts at a hospital

‘Judging and comparing a birth image with a wedding photo are just two completely different ends of the spectrum. To have a panel of judges trained specifically in birth photography was paramount to the legitimacy of such a prestigious award.’

This was the second year of the competition and Lacey added she was excited to keep it going for years to come, saying: ‘We are looking for images that exceed the standard of what would be given to a birth client. 

‘The images we are looking for exceed visual communication, are above the standard of storytelling that we would expect any professional to deliver. The energy surrounding the competition was so electric. I was honoured to host such an incredible event that this niche so desperately desired.’

To see all the winning photographs, go to www.birthphotographeroftheyear.com 

This was the second year of the competition and Lacey added she was excited to keep it going for years to come, saying: 'We are looking for images that exceed the standard of what would be given to a birth client'. Pictured, Hayden Trace, from America, captures a woman giving birth in her bathtub

This was the second year of the competition and Lacey added she was excited to keep it going for years to come, saying: ‘We are looking for images that exceed the standard of what would be given to a birth client’. Pictured, Hayden Trace, from America, captures a woman giving birth in her bathtub

In this intimate photograph, taken by Sarah Fowler, from Alabama, a father looks adoringly at his child, who is being held by his partner following the youngster's birth

In this intimate photograph, taken by Sarah Fowler, from Alabama, a father looks adoringly at his child, who is being held by his partner following the youngster’s birth

Explaining why she created the awards (pictured is one of the winners), Lacey said: 'It was important to host a competition because there are so many other incredible competitions in the world, but they are not specific to birth photographers. So we often get lumped in with documentary, photojournalism, and wedding documentary categories'

Explaining why she created the awards (pictured is one of the winners), Lacey said: ‘It was important to host a competition because there are so many other incredible competitions in the world, but they are not specific to birth photographers. So we often get lumped in with documentary, photojournalism, and wedding documentary categories’

Rianna Cross, from Australia, gives a glimpse of one man tenderly comforting his partner as they sit submerged in a bathtub ahead of a water birth

Rianna Cross, from Australia, gives a glimpse of one man tenderly comforting his partner as they sit submerged in a bathtub ahead of a water birth

'The images we are looking for exceed visual communication, are above the standard of storytelling that we would expect any professional to deliver,' said Lacey. Pictured, Rianna Cross captures a mother breast feeding her child shortly after the youngster's birth

‘The images we are looking for exceed visual communication, are above the standard of storytelling that we would expect any professional to deliver,’ said Lacey. Pictured, Rianna Cross captures a mother breast feeding her child shortly after the youngster’s birth

Jelina Sonnenberg, who is a dual certified birth photographer, birth videographer, and birth doula based out of Albertville, France, captured this image of a mother's agony while giving birth at a hospital

Jelina Sonnenberg, who is a dual certified birth photographer, birth videographer, and birth doula based out of Albertville, France, captured this image of a mother’s agony while giving birth at a hospital

The emotion of childbirth was clear to see in Rianna Cross' competition entry, taken in Australia, with a father and child embracing the mother after she has given birth

The emotion of childbirth was clear to see in Rianna Cross’ competition entry, taken in Australia, with a father and child embracing the mother after she has given birth 

Hanna Hill from the United States, submitted her photograph 'My Body, My Birth', of a mother and her newborn sitting on a bed following childbirth

Hanna Hill from the United States, submitted her photograph ‘My Body, My Birth’, of a mother and her newborn sitting on a bed following childbirth

This photograph by Sarah Lentz is thought to capture a tired father waiting to hear about the birth of his child while his partner is in labour in an unknown hospital

This photograph by Sarah Lentz is thought to capture a tired father waiting to hear about the birth of his child while his partner is in labour in an unknown hospital

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk