We invited a panel of esteemed nature photographers, writers, and photo editors—chaired by award-winning wildlife photographer Suzi Eszterhas—to judge and select from this year's competition entries.

“BigPicture has become one of the most prestigious nature photography contests in the world. Every year, the judging panel has the privilege of seeing thousands of exquisite images from all corners of the globe, so many of which just blow your mind.”

—Suzi Eszterhas, BigPicture Jury Chair

Suzi Eszterhas

Jury Chair
San Francisco, CA

Suzi is an award-winning wildlife photographer who is best known for her images of baby animals in the wild. Her photographs have been published in over 100 magazine
cover and feature stories in publications around the world.
She has ten books in print and another four in progress. Suzi is a very dedicated conservationist and lends her images and expertise to help raise funds and awareness for several environmental organizations around the globe.

James Balog

Boulder, CO

For 35 years, James has broken new conceptual and artistic ground on
one of the most important issues of our era: human modification of our planet’s natural systems. He and his Extreme Ice Survey team are featured in the 2012 internationally acclaimed, Emmy award-winning documentary Chasing Ice and in the 2009 PBS/NOVA special, Extreme Ice.
He is the author of ICE: Portraits of Vanishing Glaciers and seven other books. His photos have been extensively published in major magazines, including National Geographic, and exhibited at museums and galleries worldwide.

Kathy Moran

Washington, D.C.

Kathy Moran is National Geographic magazine’s first senior editor for natural history projects. A 34-year veteran of the Society, Moran has been producing projects about terrestrial and underwater
ecosystems for the magazine since 1990. She was named “Picture Editor of the Year” for her winning portfolio in the 2006 Pictures of the Year competition and the 2011 Best of Photo competition. She is a founding member of the International League
of Conservation photographers and served for many years on the Executive Committee.

Melissa Groo

Ithaca, NY

Melissa is the wildlife photography columnist for Outdoor Photographer magazine and a contributing editor
to Audubon magazine. She is the Chair of NANPA’s Ethics Committee, and recently received NANPA’s
2017 Vision Award. She believes
that photography can be both fine
art and a powerful vehicle for storytelling, and is passionate about nature photography that furthers conservation.

Pete Oxford

Quito, Ecuador

Pete is an award-winning conservation photographer whose images have appeared widely in most of the major magazines of the world in the field including National Geographic,
BBC Wildlife, Time, International Wildlife, Smithsonian, Geo, and Ranger Rick. He was considered by Outdoor Photographer magazine to
be among the top 40 most influential nature photographers in the world
and is a Founder Fellow of the International League of Conservation Photographers. He is currently a
co-owner and operator of Focus Expeditions, leading responsible
travel to some of the world’s richest cultures and most biodiverse and pristine areas of our planet.

Larry Minden

Aptos, CA

Larry is founder and director of Minden Pictures, a specialty picture agency representing the stock images of top professional wildlife and nature photographers since 1987. Today Minden Pictures is renowned world-wide for its premium natural history image collection, while enabling Minden photographers to continue undertaking personal photographic projects which so benefit the conservation community.

Sophie Stafford

Bristol, UK

Editor of BBC Wildlife Magazine for nearly 10 years, Sophie now works as an independent communications and photography consultant for the UK’s leading conservation charities, improving supporter engagement through the power of visual storytelling. For eight years, Sophie was a judge of the prestigious Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition and she regularly joins the juries of great photo competitions, from
World Press Photo to Mexico’s Por el Planeta. She works closely with photographers to bring their 
work to wider audiences through exhibitions, books and other media.