The Milky Way Photographer of the Year Contest Celebrates the Dazzling Band of Light in Our Skies



Lorenzo Ranieri, “The Lions Den,” Atacama Desert, Chile. All images courtesy of Capture the Atlas, shared with permission

Whether seen from the craggy mountain landscapes of New Zealand or the vast, arid expanses of the Atacama Desert, the Milky Way is a brilliant band of light that glitters in the night sky above every spot on Earth. A photo contest devoted to our galaxy celebrates the diverse, dazzling appearances of the star-studded system from around the globe.

Now in its 7th year, the Milky Way Photographer of the Year competition by Capture the Atlas showcases 25 spectacular images chosen from more than 5,000 entries. Included are Lorenzo Ranieri’s shot of the galaxy shooting across the sky like a kaleidoscopic arch that frames a mass of rocks, along with a photo by Tom Rae taken in New Zealand’s Mount Cook National Park. As the Milky Way bursts upward like a celestial flare in the sky, twinkling stars are reflected in the lake below, connecting Earth and the cosmos.

Find more of the winning images on the contest website.

Maximilian Höfling, “The Tajinaste,” Mirador El Tabonal Negro, Tenerife, Spain

Stephanie Thi, “Starry Hoodoo Wonderland,” Kanab, Utah, USA

Kavan Chay, “Starlight Therapy,” Aoraki/Mt Cook National Park, New Zealand

John Rutter, “Mungo Dreamtime,” Mungo National Park, NSW, Australia

Tom Rae, “Lightning Lake,” Aoraki, Mount Cook National Park, New Zealand

Yuri Beletsky, “Blue Lagoon Under the Stars,” Atacama Desert, Chile

Rositsa Dimitrova, “Blooming Bottle Tree,” Socotra Island, Yemen


Do stories and artists like this matter to you? Become a Colossal Member today and support independent arts publishing for as little as $5 per month. You’ll connect with a community of like-minded readers who are passionate about contemporary art, read articles and newsletters ad-free, sustain our interview series, get discounts and early access to our limited-edition print releases, and much more. Join now!


Leave a Comment