Judging a contest like this is a daunting task. The amount of fantastic photographers and quality of work out there is staggering. Our goal will be to find the best and most unique images to best represent the previous year in storm photography.

What else goes into that? Well, we want variety and diversity. The top 10 finalists for Photo of the Year wont just be amazing tornado photos. We want to see all kinds epic storms, from structure to lightning to rainbows and mammatus. We will be looking for quality, sharpness, color balance, editing skill, subject matter, difficulty and composition. All of that will go into consideration.

Some amazing images will of course not make the Selections, Finalists and Winners. That’s the nature of the game. When we narrow things to those top photos, it’s going to come down to micro-critiques and emotional connection to what we’re looking at. We are confident our final results will show the best of the best for last year!

Good luck to everyone!

Mike Olbinski

Photographer, Filmmaker, Storm Chaser

Mike Olbinski has loved weather from a very early age, beginning his high school years when he first remembers using a camera to shoot a storm. That passion continued to grow until his mid-30s when he realized his love for photography and chasing weather could be combined… and it’s been a wild ride ever since. Mike’s work has been licensed by clients such as Marvel Studios, Apple, Lamborghini, National Geographic, and BBC just to name a few, and he was even honored to win an Emmy. He chases storms across the central U.S. in the spring and returns to his home in Phoenix, AZ in the summer to capture the stunning monsoon season. He is married to his amazing wife, Jina, and is blessed with three amazing kiddos. In the offseason, Mike shoots weddings and family sessions, and in his free time enjoys watching a lot of Netflix, building Legos, and playing Call of Duty.

Instagram // YouTube // Patreon

Linda van Rosmalen

Photographer, Storm Chaser, Time-lapser

Linda van Rosmalen, known online as CleverDarkElve, is a Dutch immigrant, former USArmy aviator, educator and a PhD level chemical physicist who’s heart just couldn’t stay in the lab. A creative with a scientist’s mind, she loves chasing severe weather and spending vast amounts of time in nature exploring all the beauty the natural world has to offer. Linda also has a strong background as a fine artist but eventually traded pencils and paintbrushes for cameras. She currently works full time as a freelance timelapse photographer.

Instagram // YouTube // Website

Dennis Oswald

Photographer, Geographer, Meteorologist

Dennis Oswald is a 41 year old geographer and meteorologist who lives in Neuss, Germany. He chases storms for more than two decades in Europe and since 2008 in Tornado Alley. If the weather is calm, he prefers to immerse himself in the endless expanse of American landscapes. He is particularly fascinated by the deserts of the southwest and the mountains of the northwest. He publishes his photos in books, magazines and calendars as in many exhibitions in Germany.

Instagram // Website

Nick Drieschman

Photographer, Tour Guide, Storm Chaser

Nick Drieschman is a storm chaser, photographer, and owner of Extreme Tornado Tours, a tornado and storm chasing tourism company based out of Norman, Oklahoma. Having experienced and photographed over 170 tornadoes in the past ten years, Nick is no stranger to these amazing weather events and the dynamic scenes they create. “Although my job is to help people accomplish their dreams of seeing and photographing tornadoes in person, I have never once grown tired of experiencing them firsthand and seeing the look on one of our guests faces when they see their first tornado” Nick’s work has been featured on BBC, CNBC and the Weather Channel among other major networks.

Instagram // Website