If you think you need a fancy camera to capture stunning pictures, think again.
The iPhone Photography Awards just announced the winners of their eighth annual contest.
Judges sorted through thousands of entries to pick the three best photos, as well as category-specific highlights.
“This year’s entries were especially impressive, ranging from intimate, thought-provoking moments to stunning, captivating imagery,” said IPP Awards creator Kenan Aktulun in a statement.
Check out the winning photographs in each category, and then the overall winners at the end.
And yes, you may need to keep reminding yourself that they were really taken on an iPhone.
This haunting image by Seattle-based Ben Schuyler won first place in the “Abstract” category.
Light and shadows distinguish this gorgeous first place portrait by Daniele Colombera.
“I take photographs with my telephone because it’s the future,” Jesse Alkire writes on his photography site. This picture won first place in the news and events category.
Song Han, a photographer based in Chengdu, China, cinched the top spot in the “People” category with this shot.
We might not even have realized that this mesmerizing picture taken by Xu Lin is of drying fish, if it didn’t win the award for “Food” pictures.
This striking panorama of an orange cloud won Andre Malerba first a winning spot.
Spain-based Jose Luis Saez Martinez started using his iPhone instead of a DSLR in 2011. This architectural gem won first in the “Others” category
After more than 10 years as an advertising and commercial photographer, Sephi Bergerson now lives in India doing documentary photography. This photo won the prize for “Animals.”
“I took this photo at Silvermine Nature Reserve while surveying the charred aftermath of the fires that ravaged Cape Town in March of this year,” 23-year-old Amy Paterson wrote of this picture, which topped the “Flowers” category. This particular species has “embraced fire as part of its ecology” and would become extinct without it, according to Paterson.
Yvonne Naughton, who calls herself an “accidental photographer,” took this “Nature” winner on one of her early morning walks in Snee Oosh Beach in Washington.
Jeremy Kern works primarily as a pediatric hospitalist in Washington, DC, but uses photography as a creative outlet. He took this shot on a trip to Haiti: It topped the “Children” category.
Robert Radesic’s “Sunset” winner trumps the kind of thing you’d usually see on Instagram. This shot was taken in the town of Trieste, Italy.
Chris Belcina took his winning “Landscape” photo in Great Sand Dunes National Park in Colorado. He loves how iPhone photography lets him turn “ordinary moments into magical ones.”
It was a crazy winter with over 12-feet of snow in Michigan when Heather Goss shot this first place “Seasons” photograph.
Ahmed Saeed describes Egypt’s Gharb Sehel as a village filled with “colorful houses, kind warm people and mesmerizing views of the Nile.” He received the “Travel” award.
Eucadorian Fabio Alvarez says he was enjoying “one of the most perfect afternoons” of his life on the beach in Rio, when he snapped this first place “Lifestyle” winner.
Behold the central library of Stuggart, Germany. Christian Frank’s serene shot won the “Architecture” award.
Cindy Buske’s ethereal still life won first place in that category.
Ruairidh McGlynn took a series of tree photos in Qatar, but this one felt particularly striking.
And time for the champions! Yvonne Lu captured this third-place photo while traveling back to New York City on a train. “The couple looks like they don’t need anything else in the world,” she says.
Second place goes to David Craik, who says it took great patience to capture these Starlings just as one’s shadow hit the white wall behind it. “Some may think I’m mad, but one of the most exciting things about wildlife photography is the waiting,” he says.
And first place went to Michal Koralewski, from the Polish city of Poznań, who says he felt compelled to photograph this musician because he could “almost read his life story from the wrinkles.”