Home Technology Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7 – Gizmodo

Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7 – Gizmodo

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Transylvanian Shepherds by Istvan Kerekes

Transylvanian Shepherds by Istvan Kerekes won the grand prize and was shot on an iPhone 7.
Photo: Istvan Kerekes, IPPAWARDS

DSLR or smartphone? It’s an age-old debate that photographers, enthusiasts, and journalists have been waging ever since phone cameras started getting ood. Among gadget nerds, the addition of advanced lenses or improved camera software are often used as reasons for justifying a phone upgrade—perhaps before you actually need to. However, many of the winning photos in the 2021 iPhone Photography Awards were taken on older iPhones and still look pretty dang amazing.

The grand prize-winning photo, “Transylvanian Shepherds,” was taken by Hungarian photojournalist Istvan Kerekes on an iPhone 7. And that’s not an outlier, either. Several winners throughout multiple categories were taken on iPhones that are several years old. The rules of the competition also state that photographers can’t use desktop versions of photo-editing software, though mobile versions are allowed.

Here’s a collection of some of our favorites, and you can check out the full list of winners here. Remember: The best camera is the one you have with you.

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Photographer of the Year: Bonding by Sharan Shetty

Photographer of the Year: Bonding by Sharan Shetty

Bonding by Sharan Shetty depicts a black and white photo of a seated man next to a horse

Bonding by Sharan Shetty was shot on an iPhone X.
Photo: Sharan Shetty, IPPAWARDS

The Photographer of the Year Award went to Sharan Shetty for this photo, titled “Bonding.” It was shot on an iPhone X in Azerbaijan.

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A Walk on Mars by Dan Liu

A Walk on Mars by Dan Liu

A Walk on Mars by Dan Liu depicts a man walking in a desert in Qinghai, China

Photo: Dan Liu

This sci-fi shot by Dan Liu, titled “A Walk on Mars,” was taken with an iPhone 11 Pro Max in Qinghai, China.

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Side-Walking on Air by Jeff Rayner

Side-Walking on Air by Jeff Rayner

Image for article titled Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7

Photo: Jeff Rayner, IPPAWARDS

This ethereal photo won third place overall and was taken by Jeff Rayner with an iPhone X in Los Angeles. It’s titled “Side-walking on Air.”

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Frozen Lines by Matteo Lava

Frozen Lines by Matteo Lava

overhead view of a frozen body of water

Photo: Matteo Lava, IPPAWARDS

This photo looks incredibly detailed, no? Well, “Frozen Lines” by Matteo Lava won third place in the Abstract category. It was shot on an iPhone 8 Plus.

Candy by Yuexiang Wang

A series of pastel pink archways over a patterned floor

Photo: Yuexiang Wang, IPPAWARDS

“Candy” by Yuexiang Wang won first place in the Architecture category. It was shot in Shanghai, China, on an iPhone 8 Plus.

Untitled by Yayun Liu

Image for article titled Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7

Photo: Yayun Liu, IPPAWARDS

This photo by Yayun Liu almost looks like it came out of a video game. It won second place in the Architecture category and was shot on an iPhone 7 Plus.

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The Watchman by Diego Moreno

The Watchman by Diego Moreno

Image for article titled Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7

Photo: Diego Moreno, IPPAWARDS

This spooky shot is appropriately titled “The Watchman” and won Diego Moreno of Mexico third place in the Children category on an iPhone 5S. All I know is every photo I ever took with an iPhone 5S looked like it was taken on a potato cam.

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Clouds by Einat Shteckler

Clouds by Einat Shteckler

Image for article titled Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7

Photo: Einat Shteckler, IPPAWARDS

“Clouds” was shot by Einat Shteckler of Israel on an iPhone 11. It won first place in the Environment category.

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The Old Gym by Mahabub Hossain Khan

The Old Gym by Mahabub Hossain Khan

Image for article titled Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7

Photo: Mahabub Hossain Khan, IPPAWARDS

This photo, “The Old Gym” by Mahabub Hossain Khan, won first place in the Lifestyle category and was shot on an iPhone XS.

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Artist’s Preview by Pavlo Kyryliuk

Artist’s Preview by Pavlo Kyryliuk

Image for article titled Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7

Photo: Pavlo Kyryliuk, IPPAWARDS

This eerie photo won third place in the Other category. It’s titled “Artist’s Preview” and was shot by Pavlo Kyryliuk on an iPhone X.

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Reach the Soul by Quim Fabregas

Reach the Soul by Quim Fabregas

Image for article titled Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7

Photo: Quim Fabregas, IPPAWARDS

“Reach the Soul” by Quim Fabregas won third place in the Portrait category and was shot on an iPhone 8.

Dusk by Enhua Ni

Image for article titled Here Are the 12 Best iPhone Photos of 2021—and the Winner Was Shot on an iPhone 7

Photo: Enhua Ni, IPPAWARDS

“Dusk” by Enhua Ni won second place in the Sunset category and was shot on an iPhone 7 Plus.

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