Meet our international Wiki Loves Earth 2022 winners!

The middle of the contest

These days we are at the middle of the contest, so we’re able to draw the first conclusions.

We came to an inference that Wiki Loves Earth is interesting for many countries. It’s not only a great opportunity to show the charms of nature, but also a huge chance to draw public attention to the environmental problems and Wikipedian activities. The focus is not only on the sites of national importance, but also on the areas protected on the regional level, and on the widest variety of natural sites possible: forests, parks, gardens, rocks, caves and whatever is protected in the participating countries. This makes that most users will be able to find several natural heritage sites close to them.

Blue Lakes, Bilohiskyi region. Ukraine. Author: Oksana Golovko. CC BY-SA 3.0

More than 20 countries were ready to organize «Wiki Loves Earth». There are: Andorra, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Canada, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece, Iraq, FYR Macedonia, Nepal, the Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland and Ukraine.

However, only 13 of them were ready to start May 1. The reasons were different: from lack of time to governmental bureaucracy (as in some countries it was too hard to gain the lists of natural heritage sites from public authorities).

Matka (Macedonian: Матка, meaning “womb”) is a canyon located west of Skopje, Macedonia. Covering roughly 5,000 hectares, Matka is one of the most popular outdoor destinations in Macedonia and is home to several medieval monasteries. Author: Miljovska. CC BY-SA 3.0

Nevertheless, Wiki Loves Earth is successfully going at 13 countries: Andorra&Spain, Armenia, Austria,  Azerbaijan, Brazil, Estonia, Germany, Ghana, Macedonia, Nepal, the Netherlands and Ukraine. A few days ago India has also joined the international contest.

Massive Cadiretes. Author: Enfo. CC BY-SA 3.0

So far nearly 30 000 photos from all over the world were uploaded to the Wikimedia Commons under a free license. All photos will be freely licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 A Creative Commons (CC) license is one of several public copyright licenses that enable the free distribution of an otherwise copyrighted work.  Licensees may copy, distribute, display and perform the work and make derivative works based on it only if they give the author or licensor the credits in the manner specified by these. It’s a good opportunity for Wikipedia to collect more free photos and use them as illustrations.

Now the first three leaders are Ukraine (6572 photos), Macedonia (4730 photos) and Andorra&Spain (4404 photos).

Write an article about the nature heritage

Photographers are masters of presenting needed information. But … that’s as well as famous historians and financial geniuses. Sometimes it’s difficult to draw a precise line between pure knowledge and manipulation of us – subtle and subliminal or direct and brazen. The truth lies somewhere in the middle, somewhere in the intersection. Therefore we would like to see, not just read. Heard, not just seen. You can go not everywhere, but you can have a pretty full understanding of your own country.

Synevyr Nature Reserve, Ukraine. Author: Aleksandr t15. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

On May 1 , in conjunction with the photo contest «Wiki Loves Earth» Wikipedia started a month of articles about nature monuments in Ukraine. In the articles Wikipedians use all that photos from the contest. Sometimes having a good picture prompts for writing essay about an event. Sometimes having the article helps choose a place for a travel.  There is no importance what  the chicken or the egg was the first.  The main thing that we get to pinch more free knowledge .

Kaski district of Nepal is famous for many Lakes including Fewa. But not every one other to visit other than Fewa. Because of the lack of publicity Begnas lake is barely explored. Author: Gaurab. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

During these two weeks volunteer editors have created over 75 articles and have improved over 20.

If you love to travel and take pictures – load your own photos. If you are not too handy with a camera – write articles. Improve the existing text. Loads and write. Share your expertise with others in the hope that both of you share too. Or already shared before.

Eidapere Park; Eidapere Forest District Park. Author: Ilme Parik. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Estonia license.

Author: Antanana.

Congratulate India on a start of «Wiki Loves Earth» and Macedonia with second ranking place!

«Wiki Loves Earth» international photo contest has a new participant – beautiful and ancient India. It already has 28 first photos at the Commons.

Macedonia is a great country with active and talented people. Now it is in the second place with 3265 uploaded photos.

Views of Mavrovo. Author: MacedonianBoy. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

In Twitter @WikiLovesEarth you can find the most interesting facts from the each country. For example, Darco Nikilovsky from Macedonia uploaded near 1000 photos from his native country!

So, we congratulate our colleagues from India and Macedonia!

Coast near the village Dolno Dupeni. Author: Bijonse. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

 

Contest’s statistics

Today we have only 12 countries that started «Wiki Loves Earth» 2014. Unfortunately, Greece isn’t in this list now, but we hope they will be there soon.

Ukraine is in the first place with 1996 photos. Austria has 1899 photos. The third place has 1885 photos. Here’re Spain&Andorra.

The other countries are in the following order:

4. Macedonia with 1259 photos

5. Germany (1102)

6. Armenia (858)

7. Brazil (533)

8. Nepal (251)

9. Azerbaijan (192)

10. Netherlands (180)

11. Ghana (91)

12. Estonia (78).

Some beautiful photos from this year contest:

Artificial lake Mladost , Veles, Macedonia. Author: Bijonse
Aragats mountain, Aragatsotn, Armenia. Author: Alexander Mkhitaryan B
Cataratas – Foz do Iguaçu, Brazil. Author: Rodrigo28
The view of the Himalaya seen from Phoolbari Village, Nepal. Author: Skrissh2013
Azerbaijan. Author: Alikooo.
Zuid-Kennemerland National Park, Netherlands. Author: Bnms
Mountain Afadjato, Ghana. Author: General DeLa Rey
Oru Landscape Protection, Estonia. Author: LeaRand

Read more at the international Facebook page ot in Instagram.

Here is just a short update from the Wiki Loves Earth Dutch team

Wiki Loves Earth in the Netherlands is ready for the competition to start on the 1st of May that  will last until the 30th of June.

National park “Weerribben”, Netherlands. Author: Ziko van Dijk. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Netherlands license.

In addition to the photo competition, the Dutch chapter took the initiative to not only award prices for photos, but also to have a main prize for the best recorded sound in nature. Furthermore, the Netherlands has made an official partnership with the 20 National Parks that exist to collaborate on communication, organisation of events and access to expert knowledge. Throughout the two months Wikimedia Nederland will be hosting photography & Wikimedia Commons workshops, including a private tour in different parks across the country. The kick-start was last Saturday on the 3rd of May and was very successful!

People in a canoe in the Weerribben. Author: Ter-burg. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Netherlands license.

More information you can read at the official site ot at the Facebook page.

A good start in Spain&Andorra and Austria

The contest is opened only 4 days, but we have two leaders: Austria and Spain&Andorra.They are constantly changing places in the ranking. At this moment Austria has 1442 photos and Spain&Andorra – 1425.

Malh deth Melic. Author: Amadalvarez. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

For Andorra & Spain the contest has had a good start with 1 out of 5 of all photos. They have also a dedicated Flickr group that works well with currently 100 more photos pending to transfer to Commons. 80% of the photos were uploaded by one user known as a very active participant in previous editions of Wiki Loves Monuments. The bad news is that almost all photos are from Catalonia, only one from Andorra and none from other Spanish regions. The spanish team has an active partner for promotion and press releases, but only for Catalonia. Now they should improve outreach in other regions.

One of the uploaded photos from Spain. Author: Mikipons. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

We wish new achievements and the huge amount of beautiful photos from the each region of Spain and Andorra.

Contest’s progress

We have the first statistics of uploaded photos.

The largest number of them is in Austria – 1117.

View from the wine bill to the north, upper and lower Schwarzsee, Frauennock (2678m). Author: Gerdsch. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Austria license.

Andorra&Spain ranks second place with 1003 photos.

Photo from Spain. Author: Mikipons. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

And Macedonia ranks the third position with 528 photos.

View of Matka, April 2014. Author: MacedonianBoy. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

Then we see:

4. Ukraine with 428 photos

5. Germany with 379 pictures

6. Armenia and 214 photos

7. 84 photos in Azerbaijan

8. 69 in Brazil

The other counties have less then 50 photos.

Sudak. Crimea. Ukraine. Author: Olena Ilnytska. This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.

More photos from each country you can see at the official Facebook page, Vkontakte or at Instagram.

 

That’s how the jury chose the winners last year!

Before the start of the photo contest “Wiki loves Earth – 2014” the Organizing Committee decided to supplement the published earlier results of the contest of 2013 by brief comments to the best photographs.

Oleg Zharii was asked to write them. We hope that his thoughts concerning the twelve photographs will help one to understand why namely these pictures were awarded by jury and will provide useful recommendations to photographers including participants of the next contests.

1st place — Krasnickaja Katya, “Sunrise on Ai-Petri Mountain”
1st place — Krasnickaja Katya, “Sunrise on Ai-Petri Mountain”

1. The ground of success of this photograph: it shows a natural phenomenon hardly ever seen by us. One can easily see sunlight over clouds through a plane window but rarely from the ground. A good detail contrast in the foreground, even in shadows, gentle colors of sunrise lighting, nice background and sky – well-deserved first place.

 2nd place — Sergiy Krynytsya (Haidamac), “Canyon of Dnister”, Town of Zalishchyky, Ternopil Region

2nd place — Sergiy Krynytsya (Haidamac), “Canyon of Dnister”, Town of Zalishchyky, Ternopil Region

2. Dnister’ canyon is one of the Seven Natural Wonders of Ukraine, and the loop of the river around Zalishchyky is its most beautiful spot. The photo is a classic of landscape photography: both foreground and background are interesting. Long shadows from trees show that sunset is coming, and the best time for shooting is namely two or three hours after sunrise and before sunset when lighting is softer than at daytime.

One could shoot this picture with one frame using a wide-angle lens. However, in this case the peninsula in the background would look too small as compared to the foreground. That’s why the author made use of the panorama technique at a moderate focal length. The photograph has been stitched from eight vertical frames, what equalized scales of plans. However may be the panorama should be completed by one more frame on the left.

When one is shooting a picture with several planes (this landscape has also a middle plane, the bridge), shift for even several centimeters strongly affects the final result. A composition is ideal when the foreground details do not hide each other. The stones should remain in the picture and the tree should not hide the bridge (should the proper shooting location exist). May be, shift to the right would enable the photographer to reveal the bridge, however the picturesque stones could be lost. This panorama demonstrates importance of careful selection of the surveying point. It seems so that the author has selected the best one.

3rd place — Balkhovitin, “Glassy outcrop of upper chalk”, Town of Kramatorsk, Donetsk Region
3rd place — Balkhovitin, “Glassy outcrop of upper chalk”, Town of Kramatorsk, Donetsk Region

3.Trees in the foreground and in the background add volume to the image of a unique geological formation, and the road brings dynamics to the picture. The photograph could become more interesting under a different lighting. However, photography, similarly to diplomacy, is “the art of possible”. That’s why at the moment when the travelling photographer found himself at the surveying point, he surely made the best possible shot.

4th place - Balkhovitin, Regional Landscape Park “Zuivskiy”, Donetsk Region
4th place – Balkhovitin, Regional Landscape Park “Zuivskiy”, Donetsk Region

4. Prerequisite of an interesting landscape photographs like this is the presence of both foreground and background. At a slow shutter speed, water flow and plants movement in the foreground are blurred. This brings dynamics to the picture. Sun reflection in the right part and a sun spot in the foreground add charm. Tender April leafage makes the photo more transparent.

5th place - Balkhovitin, Ukrainian Steppe National Park “Stone Graves”, Donetsk Region
5th place – Balkhovitin, Ukrainian Steppe National Park “Stone Graves”, Donetsk Region

5. Chimeric stone conglomeration in the foreground and a quieter one in the background create contrast of the picture. Middle of spring with its intrinsic tender leafage and flowers in stone fissures, probably, is the best season for shooting. Middle placement of horizon in this case is a justified violation of photography canons not recommending dividing the frame in half by horizontal or vertical lines. Thanks to that, nice sky occupies in the picture it’s deserved and enjoying equal rights place. Stones on the right close the frame thus creating a balanced composition.

6th place - Ihor Dereviahin, Obruchev mud volcano, Crimea
6th place – Ihor Dereviahin, Obruchev mud volcano, Crimea

6. The best way to represent an unusual object of nature in a plain is to shoot it “as is”. For this relief, absence of sunlight may be is a better variant of lighting. The picture is well completed by a soft pattern of summer sky. However, the result could be better in early spring or in gold autumn season. Also it would be better to expand the frame both ways. Otherwise, the composition looks too tight.

7th place - Balkhovitin, Wildlife preserve “Khaphalskiy”, Crimea
7th place – Balkhovitin, Wildlife preserve “Khaphalskiy”, Crimea

7. Small waterfalls in mountains are especially magical in autumn when ground is covered by colored leafs. We should accept the situation that direct sunlight won’t reach water in the forest. However, whenever possible one should avoid symmetrical frame composition when the main accent is centered.

 

 

8th place - Slava Leontiev, Botanical wildlife preserve “Tepe-Oba mountain massif”, Crimea
8th place – Slava Leontiev, Botanical wildlife preserve “Tepe-Oba mountain massif”, Crimea

8. Classics of landscape photography: foreground under sunlight, shadowed picturesque mountains and sea in the background. On should try to guess how such amount of snow has sticked to the tree!

 

 

 

9th place - Ihor Dereviahin, Tikhaya (Quiet) Harbor, Crimea
9th place – Ihor Dereviahin, Tikhaya (Quiet) Harbor, Crimea

9. Contrast of the picture is created by beautiful clouds and blue sea. When you don’t know what is outside the frame, you can assume that one should experiment with composition to get the most impressive photograph.

10th place - Sergiy Krynytsya (Haidamac), Lakes Vorozheska, Massif Svidovets, Carpathians
10th place – Sergiy Krynytsya (Haidamac), Lakes Vorozheska, Massif Svidovets, Carpathians

10. Zest of the photograph is its diagonal composition. Reflection of clouds in still water creates impression of conciliation.

 

 

 

 

11th place - Mykhailo Petskovych,“White Elephant”, building of the former observatory on the Pip Ivan Mountain, Ivano-Frankivsk Region
11th place – Mykhailo Petskovych,“White Elephant”, building of the former observatory on the Pip Ivan Mountain, Ivano-Frankivsk Region

11. Contrast side light reveals relief of snow covering and volume of the construction. People figures on the roof give an idea of its size. Impressive contrast between bright snow and subdued sky.

 

 

 

12th place - Serhiy Krynytsia (Haidamac), Zelenyi (Green) Island in Korsun, Cherkassy Region
12th place – Serhiy Krynytsia (Haidamac), Zelenyi (Green) Island in Korsun, Cherkassy Region

12. Emotional sculpture of Rosych makes contrast with quiet and majestic beauty of the island. Beautiful sky. The picture would be better if the frame has been expanded to the left and obviously under the quiet weather.

 

 

 

Oleg Zharii, photographer, member of jury of the contest «Wiki loves Earth – 2013», www.zharii.kiev.ua