20 Most Inspiring Entries in Red Bull's Epic Photo Contest

Lower Tomata Falls, Mexico

It's back! Can you believe it's already been three years since we wrote about Red Bull Illume, the world's biggest photography contest for action and adventure sports? (Remember the incredible winners?) Beginning in June, Red Bull has been slowly leaking its top 250 finalists, and today, we're happy to announce that the gallery has been complete! We just spent the last few hours looking over each image and all we can say is, "Wow!"

Similar to last time, there are 10 different categories in this contest: Close Up, Creativity, Energy, Experimental, Illumination, Lifestyle, Playground, Sequence, Spirit, and Wings. From tens of thousands of entries, 50 finalists will be announced and invited to attend a grand ceremony in the city of Hong Kong where the winners will be unveiled. Though you'll have to wait for August 29 for all that, you can enjoy our top 20 right here. We love how each of these is either inspiring (in terms of travel and extreme sports) or artistic (check out the cool shadows and unique perspectives)!

Above photographer: Lucas Gilman, Athlete: Rush Sturges


Tallinn, Estonia

Photographer: Jaanus Ree, Athlete: Gard Hvaara

Zakynthos, Greece

Photographer: Dimitrios Kontizas, Athletes: Hubert Schober, Kedley Oliveti

Saas-Fee, Wallis, Switzerland

Photographer: Willi Nothers, Athlete: Teddy Berr

Aniak, AK, USA

Photographer: Scott Serfas, Athlete: John Jackson

Helmcken Falls, Wells Grey Provincial Park, BC, Canada

Photographer: Christian Pondella, Athlete: Will Gadd, Tim Emmett

Peniche, Portugal

Photographer: Miguel Nunes, Athlete: Hugo Pinheiro

Kiroro, Hokkaido, Japan

Photographer: Yves Suter, Athlete: Dominik Betschart

Frejus, France

Photographer: Sebastian, Athlete: Unknown

White Sea, Arctic Circle, Russian Federation

Photographer: George Karbus, Athlete: Katerina Hamsikova

Margalef, Spain

Photographer: Bernardo Gimenez, Athlete: Olivier Favresse

Are, Sweden

Photographer: Elias Kunosson, Athlete: Fredrik Berggren

Dehab, Egypt

Photographer: Rafal Meszka, Athlete: Emilia Biala

Spirit Falls, Little White Salmon River, WA, USA

Photographer: Mike Leeds, Athlete: Rush Sturges

Tamokdalen, Norway

Photographer: Rami Hanafi, Athlete: Miikka Hast

Manitowish Waters, WI, USA

Photographer: Ryan Taylor, Athlete: Ben Horan

Vila Franca do Campo, Azores, Portugal

Photographer: Romina Amato, Athlete: Todor Spasov

Tuamotus, French Polynesia

Photographer: Ben Thouard, Athlete: Manu Bouvet

Ljubljana, Slovenia

Photographer: Miha Godec, Athlete: Timotej Lampe Ignjic

Oahu, HI, USA

Photographer: Zakary Noyle, Athlete: Gabriel Medina


Isn't Zakary Noyle's beautifully crafted sequence of Brazilian surfer Gabriel Medina just amazing (immediately above)?

Red Bull Illume website

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Tags: bull, contest, illume, photo, photography, red

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