That’s a wrap! After much deliberation, the judging phase is complete and the finalists of Capital Photographer of the Year 2022 have been selected.

The judging panel reduced a record-breaking 2,500 entries to just 18 photographs, which represent the very best of a close competition.

The exciting news is, you can now experience all the finalists for yourself in a full-scale exhibition at Courtenay Creative from 29 June to 2 July. You can peruse all 18 finalists and discover the category winners and the competition’s supreme winner, dubbed Capital Photographer of the Year.

We’ll be hosting fun events during the week, including a dog-friendly day, and a coffee and donut morning with our pals Porno Donuts and Good Fortune coffee, all to be announced in the coming weeks. There’s also People’s Choice which you’ll be able to vote for, so stay tuned and enjoy the exhibition!

Scroll down to see the finalists in each category.



Whenua is land, territory, and the ground beneath our feet. In this category, photographers should celebrate the mighty Wellington landscape that provides us with so much.

It’s always a difficult task to judge the Whenua category with so many great photographs. But in the end, the photographs that do well are the ones with the strongest composition, the ones that put you right there in the moment.

– Mark Gee

Splash by Trixan Grande
House in the Clouds by Kristina Hlavackova
The Fog at Dawn by Bridget Sloane



A place is nothing without its people, and Wellington has some of the best. This category is all about showcasing the humans of Wellington – the things they do and the things they love.

There were some very strong images in this series. I like portraits that don’t shout “Here I am!” There are a few in this category that have that air of quietness about them: detailed, well-observed images that make you wonder what’s going on.

– Derek Henderson

The Mysterious Gardener by Eduan Groenewald
Freedom Bikers by Alan Blundell
Half Time Dip by Zuyi Woon



From our dwellings to our roadways, the Wellington we live in has been constructed by human hands over generations. This category celebrates the constructed space that forms our region.

It was really hard to pick the winner, and overall I thought this whole category was really good. Lots of thoughtful images with strong use of colour.

– Chris Sisarich

Wellington Airport Tower by Rob Fall
Grid by Eva Kerer
Kite of Steel by Hang Ren



The pandemic has reconstructed the relationship we have with our personal spaces. We want to see photography that speaks to your idea of the inside, whether that represents a space for socialising, privacy, or creativity.

An interesting aspect of the competition, where people are playing with ideas of nostalgia and authenticity through a physical medium. There’s a dream-like quality to a lot of the imagery. Many photographs from lockdown are candid, but there are also images that are observational, considered, and composed.

– Victoria Baldwin

Mamma’s Bedside Essentials by Nina Cuccurullo
Sushi Night by Isabella Sutherland
Minecraft by Sam Tanner



Show us movement in a still image. That’s the key to this category. There’s no one right way to interpret this, but we definitely want the image to communicate the idea of motion.

There’s a great variety of interpretations. Beautifully created and rendered photographs, with graphic simplicity and good use of time, create the flow of movement. These photos play on the interpretation of what movement can be, both literally and philosophically.

– Virginia Woods-Jack

Fog Beams by Jack Burdan
My Body Is My Vehicle #16
by Sage Rossie
Young Star
by Humaidi Ridwan



If you’re 21 years of age or under, we want to see your best photography. This is our only open category, with the only rule being that some aspect of Wellington is captured; its people, places, performances, or pooches.

The entries in this category were all very strong. I love the way that the photographers have experimented with different compositions and viewpoints. Many of the images have a strong sense of narrative, and I enjoyed the element of humour in them.

– Lizzie Bisley

Life is a beach by Jed Stace
by Lorenzo Buhne
Bubble Head Sister
by Will Preston


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