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.

Lewis Blackwell

London, England

Lewis Blackwell is the co-founder and CEO of a new international organization focused on creative standards, launching in 2019. From 2015–2018 he was the chair of the Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition at the Natural History Museum in London. In 2017 he was the editor-in-chief/creative director of a new environmental journal, BE:, anointed by Library Journal as one of the “magazines of the year.” Over the past decade he has created a sequence of bestselling and award-winning books on photographic and environmental issues, including Life and Love of Trees, Rainforest, Photowisdom, and Life and Love of Sea. He was formerly worldwide creative director of Getty Images and editor-in-chief/publisher of the magazine Creative Review.

Cristina Mittermeier

Vancouver Island, Canada

A virtuous mind and voice in conservation photography and one of the most influential female photographers in the world, Cristina Mittermeier has been hailed as one of the most important outdoor photographers of this generation. Cristina is a National Geographic Photographer, Co-founder and Vision Lead of the conservation society, SeaLegacy, a Sony Artisan of Imagery and the editor of 25 coffee table books on conservation issues. She was recognized as a National Geographic Adventurer of the Year in 2018 and is acknowledged as one of the most Influential Women in Ocean Conservation in 2018 by Ocean Geographic. Cristina has worked in more than 100 countries on every continent in the world. Her work is about building a greater awareness of the responsibility of what it means to be a human.

Greg du Toit

Pretoria, South Africa

Greg du Toit is an award-winning professional wildlife photographer and African safari guide whose work is easily recognized by the tangible mood, primitive energy and vibrant colours that it portrays. In 2013 he was recognized as the Wildlife Photographer of the Year. While his work is widely published, he has also been interviewed by the BBC World Service and has appeared on the NBC’s Today Show. He is the author of two books: African Wildlife Exposed, a portfolio of his work in Africa and containing a decade's worth of imagery; and Phototips—Getting It Right In Camera, a how-to book for photographers. Greg is not only a passionate photographer, but also a passionate African who communicates his personal appreciation and awe for wild creatures through his work.

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.

Esther Horvath

Bremen, Germany

Esther Horvath is a documentary photographer, Fellow at the International League of Conservation Photographers and science photographer for Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research in Germany. She focuses on the work of multiple science groups involved in developing new research projects that are working to better understand the changing polar regions. Her main long-term documentary project follows ‘IceBird’ science expeditions researching the changing Arctic Ocean sea ice. By documenting the work of scientists who deliver important data, she hopes to raise public awareness regarding these fragile environments. Her work has been featured in National Geographic, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, TIME, Audubon Magazine, and GEO Magazine among others.

Roy Toft

Ramona, California

Roy Toft has been pursuing his career as a wildlife photographer for three decades. In addition to being a biologist, natural-history educator, and a Senior Fellow of the International League of Conservation Photographers (ILCP), Roy shares his knowledge while leading and teaching photo workshops around the world. He has received top honors in the most prestigious professional competitions in his genre including the London Natural History Museum's Wildlife Photographer of the Year, Nature's Best, and the BBC Wildlife Photographer of the Year competition. Roy’s work has focused on wild animals and their fragile environments. His publications include National Geographic, Smithsonian, Audubon, Discover, Wildlife Conservation, Ranger Rick, and other natural history magazines and publications worldwide. His work is primarily represented by National Geographic Image collection and Getty.