by Michael dEstries
Categories: .
Photo: National Geographic

This incredible shot (larger picture here) by Sean Heavey of a supercell thunderstorm rolling across the Montana prairie is simply stunning — but was only good enough for honorable mention in the “Nature” category for the 2010 National Geographic Photography Contest.

The winner below (who also receives $10,000 and the honor of being published in worldwide editions of National Geographic magazine) was Aaron Lim Boon Teck of Singapore. He managed to capture the eruption of Indonesia’s Gunung Rinjani volcano just as the sun was rising, the moon was setting, and hikers looked on in awe. I mean, it’s got gorgeous elements, but I think supercell was robbed.

Check out the full gallery of winners over on the Huffington Post here.

About Michael dEstries

Michael has been blogging since 2005 on issues such as sustainability, renewable energy, philanthropy, and healthy living. He regularly contributes to a slew of publications, as well as consulting with companies looking to make an impact using the web and social media. He lives in Ithaca, NY with his family on an apple farm.

View all posts by Michael dEstries →
  • Cindy

    Yea supercell was definitely robbed. It had received such widespread publication before the final photo decision, I had wondered if it would hurt its chances. Art jurors like to make their own decisions. The shoe in did not win. But sometimes in life the 2nd place finishers (honorable mention in this case) end up better off success wise (think Susan Boyle, Mondo from Project Runway etc). I am sure that photo will be licensed on goods and make a small fortune.

    • belita william

      I cant believe Supercell didnt win! ANYONE can (and does) photograph erupting volcanoes…….But this photo is so awesome and RARE…..dont always go by what judges choose…I think its a clear case of not being able to see the tree for the forrest !

  • laura

    That’s just an opinion though, and one of 7 billion or so in the world. They are all fantastic pictures and received great publicity. I don’t see what the problem is.

  • crumpets are yummy

    Super cell is an awesome photo, but the second shot has more meaning and tells more of a story… it is more about human interaction with nature, there are more elements of sea and sky and people…it tells more of a story ( rather than just saying this thing is really big & powerful, the other says nature is big and sometimes we can only stand and stare in awe and at a safe distance) therefore is more poignant overall.

    The other famous NG photo, of te afghan girl, is famous not because it is of a face but because of the expression in that face and of the story it tells…it is mysterious and haunting and wild.

  • herwin

    + 1 michael ! Supercell is just amazing and awsome, the energy is just splashing from this pic. Its even spiritual and makes you feel humble !

    The winning photo though is more arty and “tells a story” (duh!) as explained by the above poster.
    To me, it looks a bit faky faky with the photographer in the left corner taking a shot. It looks tame and lame. That poor vulcano isnt the star in this photo, its just a small dot, its unjust, its unfair !

  • Kevin Barbieux

    Often in photography contests, uniqueness of an image out weighs the beauty of an image.

    • herwin

      yeah, thats true. the jury are all experts and look also at technical quality, is it “arty” or just a “wow” picture for the Yahoo folks ? and as you say “uniqueness”.
      That said, i am curious what would your choiche be ? :-)

      • Kevin Barbieux

        Sorry, didn’t see your follow up until now :) I think supercell was a better photo over all. Still, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and all that jazz.