Competition Rules & Participation for the MEMBERS COMPETITION

Take part ...

The competition is open to all members of the GDT

The overall winner as well as category winners and runners-up will receive valuable non-cash prizes. The awarded images will be presented in an exhi-bition at the GDT general meeting. After that the exhibition will be shown for several months in Bonn at the Federal Agency for Nature Conservation, where it will be launched in a large opening ceremony with wide-spread media coverage.

The images will also be shown at various other venues and also at the International Nature Photography Festival.All images will be published as a photo gallery in the GDT magazine Forum Naturfotografie and on our homepage International public media institutions have also expressed great interest in the competition

Online participation

To start your participation, please click here or on the picture above.

Entry deadline is 1st February 2022 at midnight (incoming!)

All Infos

You can download the competition rules here:

competition rules (pdf)

The competition is divided in seven categories:

K1 – Birds
K2 – Mammals
K3 – Other Animals
K4 – Plants and Fungi
K5 – Landscapes
K6 – Nature‘s Studio
K7 – Special category 2022 in cooperation with the NABU Foundation for National Natural Heritage: The Beech - Tree of the Year 2022

Please notice on submission of multi-exposures:

GDT has long been considered a pioneer in terms of acceptance and awards for creative image ideas. Nevertheless, a lot has changed in recent years in terms of camera technology, which distorts the original intention of this method. Photographers are taking pictures on different days and places and are mounting them in-camera, processing them to RAW images. Recognizing these "montages" requires more and more attention in the judging process and they also contradict the idea that pictures are taken at the best time and directly on location.

Since we want to show authentic and ethically impeccable pictures in our competitions, we will in future only allow this technique in Category 6 – Nature’s Studio. For this category it is still valid that the pictures have to be taken at the same place and at approximately the same time, and that the picture resulting from the combination of two or more single pictures should not mislead the viewer.

Judging Panel

Carsten Ott

Carsten Ott was born in Braunfels and grew up in Wetzlar, Hesse. There, as a child, he gained his first experiences in nature photography with his uncles. Since 2019, the environmental and safety engineer has been living with his family in Darmstadt.
Inspired by a nature photographer friend, Carsten took his analogue camera with him on a 6-month stay abroad. He quickly became enthusiastic about photography.
In the following years he realised numerous photo projects as well as projects with nature conservation organisations.
Carsten is characterised by a different perspective on flora and fauna. The passionate nature photographer has travelled to Asia, South America and Africa, among other places, to photograph a wide variety of animal and plant species. He is particularly fascinated by the landscape and wildlife of South Africa.
He has been a full member of the GDT since 2011 and is involved in Regional Group VI Hesse, Palatinate, Saarland.
He has won numerous national and international competitions in recent years. With his photos, Carsten wants to inspire enthusiasm for photography itself as well as for nature and unite the idea of nature conservation with photography.

Corinna Leonbacher

Corinna Leonbacher is a cellist at the Hanover State Opera and has found a second great passion alongside music in nature photography.
In contrast to music as a form of expression, which is primarily about the truly felt yet fleeting moment, the art of nature photography makes it possible to "produce" something that remains and makes the wonderful moments experienced in nature shareable even in retrospect. In her artistic nature photography, Corinna Leonbacher is not interested in depicting particularly exotic or rare motifs, but rather her pictures are intended to convey emotions, highlight a particular detail or make it possible to visually experience the beauty of nature through abstraction. The vibrant nature in and around Hanover offers Corinna Leonbacher many opportunities for nature photography on her doorstep. In addition, she particularly enjoys taking photographs in the South Tyrolean Alps and for this reason is not only a member of the GDT, but also of "Strix", the association of South Tyrolean nature photographers.
Corinna Leonbacher's photos have been successful in competitions such as the GDT Nature Photographer of the Year and Asferico and have been published in magazines and books.

Florian Smit

Portrait Florian Smit

Florian Smit works as a professional nature photographer who lives with his wife Lisa Marie in an old farmhouse near Bremervörde (Germany).
Since his early childhood he has felt this pull to spend time in nature. He has travelled all over Europe with his parents in self-built expedition vehicles. The camera joined him a bit later when he was about 8 years old and has remained his travel companion ever since.
In 2012, he left secondary school without graduating and began professional training as a photographer. He completed this training in summer 2015 as one of the top three graduates in Germany. Since then he has been a professional freelance photographer – doing his own projects throughout the world, selling fine art prints, running workshops, writing for renowned magazines, giving lectures and presenting audio-visual shows.
Together with his wife Lisa Marie, he follows his life's dream of travelling. They have known each other since school and have been living together for almost ten years.