Close Up Photographer of the Year (CUPOTY) shared its last year’s winners in late 2021. And while we wait for the 2022 winners – there’s the “Two of a Kind” challenge to bring us more fantastic photos. It’s a themed contest that runs outside the annual CUPOTY competition, and this time it’s all about tandems.
Just like the main contest, the challenge chooses the overall winner as well. This year, the title went to Dutch photographer Alex Pansier. The winning image shows a heart-warming scene of a pair of European ground squirrels sharing a faded poppy on a lawn in Vienna. These animals are classified as vulnerable, mainly due to habitat loss.
British photographer Barry Webb took second place with his image of a pair of slime molds. “Although these slime molds are minuscule,” said competition co-founder Tracy Calder, “Barry has transformed them into majestic trees making us wonder what else we pass by without noticing.”
The third place was awarded to Julia Briggs and her photo of two delicate leaf skeletons. This retired school teacher photographed them in her conservatory, saying that the structure of these leaf skeletons reminds her of lace.
Other than the first three places, there is a selection of 19 more images that made it to the finalist list. All of them, along with the winners, will be published in Amateur Photographer magazine in February 2022. Enjoy the rest of the images below, and make sure to visit CUPOTY’s website for more information.