Underwater Photo Grand Prix
18 Years | 854 Winners | $276,000 Cash
Franco Tulli

Winning best picture of the year 

My dream, when I was a kid, was to become an astronaut to go to the moon and space; I didn’t realized this dream, but I saw in the scuba diving the possibility of at least part of it: to visit the bottom of the sea and the oceans.  So in the late 1980’s, early 1990’s I began to discover this magnificent new world, not with a space suit, but with fins, mask and tanks. For a long time, the desire for travel and new discoveries pushed me to go to many parts of the planet, accompanied by my passion for photography and for the image in all its forms.
A lot of time has passed since my first underwater camera and the transition from analogue to digital was a big change: a change that brought new challenges and great possibilities. Today the level and quality of the image, thanks to digital, has risen a lot and even the photographer has had to adapt having to add to the classic qualities, new necessary skills such as, for example, the "use of computer" for post-production and image management.

The winning image 

So today to participate in a major competition like the World Shootout or send some pho
tos for an article in a magazine, you must choose from hundreds or thousands of photos, identify those that can better represent the content of the article or the theme that you want to take part in the competition, without neglecting the public to whom the eventual article is addressed or, if you know, the tastes of the jurors who often have to decide between tens of thousands of beautiful photos. Made a first selection, we try to best arrange the selected photos in post-production, always in strict compliance with the regulation and then the final choice, often accompanied, immediately after sending, by many remorse.
For the World Shootout 2017 I participated at the championship and at the Best 5, in the first case the choice was made in collaboration; much harder was that for the Best 5. I chose a theme related to the use of the Snoot technique for five different life forms and among the various possibilities I made my selection. Go back, I'd make some changes, but this is in the game of things.
In both competitions I reached the semi-finals and, even if satisfied, there is always a bit of regret, but never for the choices of the judges, which are subjective and where the luck component always has a significant weight, but for own choices, where we often have to dare a little more and let ourselves be guided by instinct.
Every regret, in this case, disappeared when I received the call from the organization that told me that I had won "The Best Picture of the Year" with the photo of the Octopus inside the shell, one of the two photos presented in the competition at teams. It was a great satisfaction: at the end, more than the prizes, in the competitions, we try to have a positive feedback of our work and when it arrives it is always the object of great happiness. But just as you should not be disappointed if your photos do not arrive in the final, so you must also be aware of the good fortune that always accompanies a victory. 
I'm not a marine biologist, so my first goal is not to make a catalog of species, but to create beautiful images, images that can thrill and maybe make you want to immerse yourself in this silent world.