The pictures from the Underwater World category of the Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2009 exhibition are a must-see, writes Eleanor Griffin.


We usually only focus on the vast landscape of Australian photography, but we had to mention these stunning pictures from the Underwater World category of the Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year 2009 exhibition, which reveal the magnificence of the aquatic environment and its global importance.

The competition is worldwide and the scope of the photos reflects this, with some shots contrasting the modern impact on our oceans while others capture a tranquil moment from the depths of a secluded lake. The images have humour and reverence, but each one encourages viewers to consider marine life from a fresh angle.

The Wildlife Photographer of the Year Competition is the longest running wildlife photographic competition in the world and is open to amateurs and professionals of any age, and this year there were 43,000 entries from 94 countries. The Underwater World category is sponsored by Project AWARE Foundation, which works to conserve the aquatic environment through education, advocacy and action.

Veolia Environnement Wildlife Photographer of the Year is owned by the Natural History Museum and BBC Wildlife Magazine.

For more information about Project AWARE and underwater photography check out www.projectaware.org./english/global_initiatives/underwater_photography.aspx

To get involved in environmental activities and make a lasting difference visit www.projectaware.org

For details of the international tour venues and dates, and to view the winning images head to www.nhm.ac.uk