In a suitably (ahem) flashy ceremony in Chicago, the winners of the 2016 Red Bull Illume Awards have been announced. Held every three years, this is hands down the biggest photography competition in action sports, with a prize pool of $100,000 in lovely new gear.

Such is the explosion in digital content, it's said that more photos are taken every two minutes than throughout the entire 19th century! It therefore came as little surprise to hear that Red Bull received some 34,000 images for this year's awards. These were whittled down to an initial 275 which were then put before a panel of 50 judges from respected publications around the world (of which I was honoured to be one).

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Snowboarding has always been at the leading edge of action sports photography and, as ever, our talents both in front of and behind the lens were well represented. Although the snow pics failed to top any of the individual categories when the final votes were tallied, German snapper Lorenz Holder – a veteran of shred magazines – managed to follow up his winning image from 2013 by scooping the overall prize once again with this stunning BMX shot above.

Scroll down to view all of the shortlisted snowboard images.

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Category: "Wings"

Photographer: Matt Georges

Athlete: Markus Keller

Location: Arlberg, Austria

Camera: Canon EOS-1D Mark IV

Lens: EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 5.6

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

It was one of those days where the moon rises and the stars align. We had a meter of fresh the day before while we were shaping this kicker in the middle of this heavy and foggy snowstorm.

Markus is a really stylish rider with a lot of flow and pop so it can be pretty easy to get nice photos with him. I would call this photo very basic but the rider got the grab, the tweak, the style, the light was nice so I just needed the right timing to get him between the snowy trees.

Sometimes you don’t really need anything more to make it work. The scene just speaks for itself and you just have to press the button smoothly.

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Category: "Energy"

Photographer: Emil Sollie

Athlete: Mons Røisland

Location: Folgefonna, Norway

Camera: Nikon D3S

Lens: 70.0-200.0 mm f/2.8

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 3.2

Shutter Speed: 1/320

We went up to Folgefonna, a glacier in Norway, to do a kickershoot with some of the guys from Norway’s national snowboarding team. The place is probably one of the most epic spots during sunset and that was the mission that day, but it turned out to be really cloudy and was a total whiteout.

We decided to head down to the camp and call it a day. On our way down we found this little lake and wondered if it was possible to surf it. Mons, the dude in the pic, hiked up for a speedcheck. It was a bit sketchy the first tries, but after five or six hits we had the shot. The pic was shot with the Nikon D3s and two flashes.

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Category: "Enhance"

Photographer: Markus Rohrbacher

Athletes: Arthur Longo, Gjermund Braaten and Ludwig Biltoft

Location: Kitzsteinhorn, Austria

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: 10-17mm

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 7.1

Shutter Speed: 1/1600

Nitro Snowboards came up with the idea to let a group of riders jump through a cloud of helium balloons. Besides organizing enough balloons, helium and covering material for storing the filled balloons, we also had to find the right location.

After some brainstorming we came up with Kitzsteinhorn, where they built us a special gap-kicker. A bowl in the middle allowed us to hide the balloons and the crew who had to lift them.

The hardest part of this project was finding the right timing to lift the balloons and have the snowboarders jump through them simultaneously. After each try we needed to fill up new balloons and get the whole crew ready again, taking almost an hour of preparation each time. The next challenge was the weather. Conditions are always unpredictable on glaciers and often we had to wait for the sun to come out or for the wind to decrease or change direction. Unfortunately, this caused us a couple of failed attempts where balloons just flew in the wrong direction or the athletes lost control when they got hit by a gust of wind.

After a couple of tries and analyzing the timing and perspectives, we were able to get the right moment and all the effort we put in paid off.

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Category: "New Creativity"

Photographer: Dominic Zimmermann

Athlete: Christian Haller

Location: Laax, Switzerland

Camera: Nikon D800

Lens: 70.0-200.0mm f/2.8

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 9.5

Shutter Speed: 1/2000

This photo was taken during a concept shoot last spring in Laax, Switzerland. Christian Haller and myself teamed up with the park shapers from Laax to create ‘Spuren’.

‘Spuren’ is all about highlighting the seemingly undramatic. With this project, we wanted to emphasize the one part of halfpipe snowboarding that is not being recognized much, but in fact is the core of it. The time you spend in the air is the part that normally draws people's attention. But it's the carve – the line you choose – that dictates how big you go, how you feel during airtime, how your movements flow. By painting the Laax halfpipe, we force the viewer to change perspective and focus on the transition only, not on what lies above or around.

We definitely underestimated the paint job! Initially we wanted to color the whole pipe with water-mixed dye paint, but the paint soaked in fast, reducing the effect, so we worked the walls, section by section. The shape crew in Laax was key for this, as we needed a snowcat with a small crane on it to be able to paint the walls.

I want to say thanks again to Snowpark Laax and Christian Haller for making this one-of-a-kind project happen.

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Category: "Enhance"

Photographer: Dave Lehl

Athlete: Sage Kotsenburg

Location: Vail Pass, CO, United States

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II

Lens: 15mm

ISO: 320

F-Stop: 8.0

Shutter Speed: 1/500

I had an idea for a series of photographs incorporating light trails coming off snowboarders’ boards a while back. I'd done a couple already when TransWorld SNOWboarding asked me to come up with one for the cover of the photo annual.

By this time it was already late April and the snow was getting scarce. I reached out to a few riders but being the end of the season, they were just too exhausted. It was late May and looking too late. In a last ditch effort, I emailed Bobby Meeks (then the team manager for Nike Snowboarding), and he said he'd reach out to his riders. Within an hour I had an email from Sage Kotsenberg. I was ecstatic!

When we met, we were shocked to find there was no snow to be seen. So much had melted the 8-10ft stump was now more like 15ft. Sage is a pro though, and wasn't fazed. After a couple warm up hits, he started blasting over it. The action was so fast that I was having a hard time catching the exact moment his hand was hitting the stump.

It was almost too dark to see and Sage wasn't sure how many more attempts he had left in him. Luckily as the sky was showing its last signs of life, Sage launched a perfect one and I caught the moment. Transworld never did use the shot on the cover, but Transworld Japan ran it on the cover of their photo annual, so it was worth it! I owe a big thanks to Sage Kotsenberg, Mike Carter, Skye Mitchell, Andy Orley, and Chad Otterstrom for their help in making it happen!

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Category: "Playground"

Photographer: Lorenz Holder

Athlete: Elias Elhardt

Location: Stuben, Austria

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM

ISO: 640

F-Stop: 11.0

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

The Arlberg region is a huge playground for snowboarders, you can build jumps and ride powder pretty much the whole winter. A week before our shoot, the region was hit by heavy snowfall for a couple of days, but unfortunately it got super warm in the immediate days afterwards. But what looked really bad at the beginning was actually not bad at all.

The powdery snow melted so fast that the meltwater started to create crazy structures in the snowfields. I've never seen anything like this. We built a step-up jump where I had quite a lot of problems to find a good angle to shoot from, and sometimes it just doesn’t work.

However, the in-run of that jump went through this unique looking scene. I asked Elias if he could sacrifice one time hitting the main jump and just go for a method air over one of the small bumps in the snowfield right next to the in-run. He was up for it and hiked up a bit higher and just went for an extreme nice method air. I was really happy to have caught this natural phenomenon with Elias making it even more special.

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Category: "Masterpiece by Yodobashi"

Photographer: Maksim Balakhovskii

Athlete: Gigi Rüf

Location: Kulusuk, Greenland

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 11.0

Shutter Speed: 1/640

I’ve been working in Greenland as a heliguide since 2005. This is one of the most beautiful places where our company Helipro organizes heliskiing programs. It’s a land of open water, fjords, huge icebergs, icecaps and of course the local Inuits.

Seeing these icebergs all the time, I dreamed about shooting somebody riding on one. On May 2014 we got the chance to organize it. We invited our old friend Gigi Rüf, who had already joined us on different trips to Chile and Patagonia.

For a few days we went scouting, searching for the right iceberg. It had to be solid, big, and even better if it was wedged on the sea floor. Finally we found one, pretty close to the island where we were staying. Our heli pilot said that he could bring us close to this iceberg, but he was afraid to land on it. So we organized a boat from the closest Inuit village, Kulusuk. We tried to find access to the iceberg with the boat, but it was impossible with all the ice in the bay. We checked with the pilot again and he agreed to try. First I shot from the closest island, but I didn’t like the angle, so I jumped in the heli and asked if Gigi could do a couple more tries. He wore a life vest under his jacket and for sure we had some safety backup plans! Still, it was a pretty risky event. Finally, I got the shot I’d been dreaming about all these years. Later, in August 2014 TransWorld SNOWboarding Magazine published this photo on its cover. That was another dream come true.

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Category: "Lifestyle"

Photographer: Claudio Casanova

Athlete: Philipp Schicker

Location: Hoch-Ybrig, Switzerland

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 8.0

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

It was just a couple of weeks before the end of the season. Philipp Schicker and I saw the weather forecast for the next day – it was going to be good. That night, it snowed almost 30cm and we knew it would be the last good powder day.

I had already taken a lot of action shots that season and I finally wanted to take some lifestyle shots as well. Philipp was the only motivated rider left at that time. At first, the fog was thick and the visibility terrible. We were afraid that the powder snow would turn to slush before the weather turned better and that we would have to call everything off. However, after a couple of coffees, the fog luckily left and the sky turned blue.

It was time to take action. We could not believe our eyes. The mountain was covered in powder without a single groomed slope. We had to hurry because the sun was pretty warm. After a long hike, we arrived at one of our favorite spots. We got a lot of great shots.

From there back into civilization, we came across a lonely camper in the middle of nowhere. We were surprised at the sight and thought that it would be different to shoot and as a result got a bunch of good shots. This camper has been in the ski area for 20 years. It reminded us of the one in the legendary film, Into the Wild.

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Category: Energy

Photographer: Claudio Casanova

Athlete: Mike Knobel

Location: Hoch-Ybrig, Switzerland

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM

ISO: 640

F-Stop: 13.0

Shutter Speed: 1/2500

On the 23rd of February, 2014 the time finally came: for the first time that season we had top weather and snow conditions in Hoch-Ybrig Switzerland, our home resort. The conditions were ideal to establish the largest and most legendary backcountry kicker in this region.

Accompanying me that day were the snowboarders: Mike Knobel, Deniz Cinek and Philipp Schicker. Since we had built this spot in previous years, we knew exactly how to calculate the distance from the take-off to the landing. To build the jump, we shov-elled snow for around four hours.

For this photo I chose my Canon 5D Mark III with a matching Canon 70-200 2.8 L telephoto lens. I put the shutter speed to 1/2500 in order to capture and freeze the energy of the perfect moment. Combined with a large aperture of 13, the sun's rays are perfectly reproduced in backlight.

Thanks to a superb leap, Mike Knobel earned the best photo of the session. Philipp Schicker unfortunately had less luck – for him it was not only the first backcountry session of the season, but also his last, since he sadly injured his foot.

He was taken back to the valley in the dark and in the deep snow on Deniz’s back. Sometimes good and bad luck lay within each other’s proximity; a year earlier my photo of Philip at the same spot earned the cover of TransWorld’s photo issue.

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Category: "Energy"

Photographer: Erin Hogue

Athlete: Craig McMorris

Location: 100 Mile House , Canada

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: Rokinon 8mm Fisheye

ISO: 400

F-Stop: 8.0

Shutter Speed: 1/1600

This photo is the result of one of those trips where nothing goes according to plan. It was late January and Whistler had no snow. Craig McMorris, Jody Wachniak, a filmer and myself opted out of town for a rail trip. Craig came down with a wicked cold, postponing the trip. When we finally got on the road Craig he was still sustaining himself on cough syrup and throat lozenges.

Twelve hours later, we made it to our destination to discover that Jody’s board had been stolen out of the truck bed. We checked a few spots that night, and came across this one. It was a pretty big build and the guys were exhausted, so we decided to go back in the morning. When we woke up Craig’s cold had spread so everyone except me was sick and the trip almost ended right there. Somehow I convinced them to stay.

On Craig’s second try he stomped this Miller Flip and casually rode away as the entire light post comes crashing down behind him. It was completely insane.

Immediately after we hopped in the truck to head home. Three hours from Whistler, it breaks down, out of cell phone range. We ended up having to ride in the dead truck on top of a flat bed tow truck through British Columbia’s gnarliest mountain pass, with no power and no heat. If it weren’t for this shot, the trip would have been a complete bust. It is crazy how a single photo has the power to make it all worth it.

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Category: "Wings"

Photographer: Vernon Deck

Athlete: Iker Fernandez

Location: St. Moritz, Switzerland

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM

ISO: 250

F-Stop: 7.1

Shutter Speed: 1/1250

I spent eight days in the Engadin Valley in the Swiss Alps with two different crews. One crew was after night time powder shots and the other just wanted to go riding and maybe shoot something. This shot was obviously with the second crew!

Iker Fenandez and Michi Albin last shot together over 10 years ago, so it was really nice to shoot with them in Michi's back yard.

The snow was pretty windblown up high so we started looking around for pockets of soft snow on the back of a ridge. We found a couple of good spots, but I talked the boys into building this one as the background was just so amazing. I really wanted to shoot backlit so the snow trail would light up.

They both jumped three times until Michi's binding broke on a hard landing. Iker has such a lazy style and you can see he's just enjoying himself up there. This is a very classic snowboarding image, the trick is timeless, the style gold and the landscape beautiful!

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Category: "Enhance"

Photographer: Matt Georges

Athlete: Mat Schaer

Location: Cervinia, Italy

Camera: Canon EOS-1D Mark IV

Lens: EF 70-200mm f/2.8L USM

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 6.3

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

We were scoping around Cervinia backcountry in Italy when we found this nice roller. The area was really sharky – protruding rocks everywhere – so options were limited and we decided to build up a nice booter to get the most out of this landing zone.

Perfect sunny days like this one are not always my cup of tea for shooting photos, especially when the spot just looks randomly white and blue. There was nothing really special to be honest so after wandering around for a little while looking at my angles options, I started to shoot ‘diptychs’ photos (an image made up of matching parts) which ended up looking like a pyramid.

I laid down in the snow to get the best angle of Mat Schaer and some symmetry with the sky and ground then I turned around to do the exact same photo on the other side of this flat ridge.

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Category: "Close Up"

Credits:

Photographer: Claudio Casanova

Athlete: Deniz Cinek

Location: Oberiberg, Switzerland

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 16-35mm f/2.8L II USM

ISO: 800

F-Stop: 11.0

Shutter Speed: 1/2000

With two friends, Deniz Cinek and Thomas Kälin, I set out into great conditions to Oberiberg, Switzerland. We used a snowy soccer field as our spot because it is easily reachable by car and also ensures access to electricity, which is great if you work with electronic equipment! The location is just right for the realization of my creative projects. I also captured my Red Bull Illume Close-Up finalist photo of a snowboarder seen through a glass ball at this location.

I was often asked whether the glass ball was a drop of water. That question led me to the idea to try to capture a photo with a water drop. We again created the same ramp as then, about two meters high. The only difference was that this time I photographed with a wide-angle lens from the bottom. I placed a wooden box with a glass lid on the ramp, which I created for this purpose in the workshop to protect the camera. Using a pipette, we distributed water drops on the glass pane. In order to evaluate the photos on the spot, my camera was connected directly to my laptop. That way I did not have to repeatedly take the camera out of the box. Deniz pulled different stunts over the camera. At the end, we captured this backside 180° Japan Grab. The drops distort Deniz into different poses and simultaneously we see the jump as a whole image.

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Category: "Masterpiece by Yodobashi"

Photographer: Lorenz Holder

Athlete: Max Horn

Location: Murnauer Moos, Germany

Camera: Sony Cyber-shot DSC-RX100 IV

Lens: 24-70mm f/1.8-2.8

ISO: 250

F-Stop: 4.5

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

I was taking a walk to scout spots for a landscape picture and as I was walking through the swamp area around Murnauer Moos, I found this unique spring-bowl with crystal clear water and awesome colors. I thought that the bird’s-eye view must look incredible so I went back to the car and switched my large-format-camera for my drone and went back.

The result was stunning and after I looked at this picture several times I just couldn’t hold back the thought of getting an action sport picture here. It was late in the season and the snow down in the valley was rare. But when I drove on that day to the spot, the landscape was beautifully covered in snow.

However, the closer I got the less snow was on the fields. When I finally got there, it was a big shock: no snow, just wet grass.

I talked to the snowboarder Max Horn and we discussed what we could do and he just made the call, trying it out without snow, just pulling in with the winch on wet grass. It sounded strange, but maybe it could work?

I think we had like three tries before the grass got dry and it became impossible to get enough speed. But we managed to get it all together on the last try. The image came out differently to what I expected, but with no snow around I think it makes the photo even more special.

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Category: "New Creativity"

Photographer: Ryan Bregante

Athlete: Kyle Fischer

Location: Brighton, UT, United States

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark II

Lens: EF 24-70mm f/2.8L USM

ISO: 250

F-Stop: 5.6

Shutter Speed: 1/250

I had been thinking about a night powder shot for a few weeks before Brighton Resort opened for night skiing. I called up two of my friends to see if they were on board with the idea and made sure that work would not get in the way of making this happen.

After scouting an area that was inbounds we waited for Mother Nature to bring us snow. When we headed up the chairlift on the night it was snowing, I made sure to have everything packed and ready to go.

Shooting at night adds complications and is extremely cold. I used a 508exII with a pocket wizard that I had stuffed into a plastic zip lock bag. Communication was key as it was dumping and the only method of getting an image in focus was to pre-focus an area we had both agreed upon.

Relying on communication only, it was like shooting with my eyes closed. After one try the pocket wizard stopped working because it was snowing so hard and the radio signals were getting confused. We figured it was the plastic bag and removed it. After two more tries we nailed the shot.

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Category: "Lifestyle"

Photographer: Jussi Grznar

Athlete: Adam Chuntz

Location: Whistler, Canada

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM

ISO: 200

F-Stop: 8.0

Shutter Speed: 1/2500

After a few seasons of photographing snowboarding in Whistler I realized that to stay motivated and focused sometimes I needed to get up there for fun, without a client or assignment, just to have a good time.

This photograph was taken during one of those days. Adam and I went up there and just rode lines all day – just because. I remember Adam straight-lined this hill and did just one awesome turn. As soon as he got to the bottom he was like, ‘f*ck yeah, that was so fun I am going to do it again’. To me, that represents the essence of snowboarding in its simplest form.

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Category: "Close Up"

Photographer: Alexander Papis

Athlete: Sage Kotsenburg

Location: Livigno, Italy

Camera: Nikon D3S

Lens: 24.0mm f/3.5

ISO: 200

F-Stop: 9.5

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

I got invited to this special event, the Suzuki Nine Knights in Livigno as one of four photographers to shoot and present my work in a photo contest. I was very exited because this is an invitational event for the best skiers and snowboarders in the world. And to shoot and get to know them was a kind of privilege for me.

It was a great challenge to get a shot for all of the four categories but at the end I won two of the four categories – not with this shot – which totally blew my mind, never expecting my shots to win, as the other photographers had submitted great photos too.

This particular shot shows Sage Kotsenburg, the Olympic gold medalist. I used a 24mm tilt shift lens from Nikon which I had to borrow from another photographer to be able to get the foreground and the background into focus. It was one of the toughest shots to take because it was really hard to get the sharpness right. The riders were all jumping differently and it took a couple of tries to get the shot.

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Category: "New Creativity"

Photographer: Pasi Salminen

Athlete: Eero Ettala

Location: Haparanda station, Sweden

Camera: Canon EOS-1D X

Lens: EF 17-40mm f/4L USM

ISO: 800

F-Stop: 4.0

Shutter Speed: 1/250

We were shooting rail nearby and I saw this nice pillar that looked like a miniature lighthouse. Me and Eero built this small ramp. My first idea was to shoot straight from the side, but from the first try I figured out that it looked too small from that direction.

I made a quick lens change and got closer and lower to solve the problem and this was the result!

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Category: "Sequence"

Photographer: Patrick Steiner

Athlete: Mario Käppeli

Location: Dolomites, Italy

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 70-200mm f/4L USM

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 10.0

Shutter Speed: 1/1250

This season was kind of strange. The winter started pretty slow and we had to wait for our first good snow days. In March we decided to go to Italy, where the snow-conditions were better than in our home resorts.

Italy didn't disappoint us; we found some nice step downs, kicker spots and some good natural hits. After we got some fresh snow over night, it was time to shoot some lines.

While the riders were hiking up I had time to check out some different angles. First I thought about focusing on the step down in the middle of the line but in the end I wanted to show the whole line and decided to go for the sequence.

I've never shot a sequence that long so I was not sure if the camera could do that many frames in a row. After some test-shots it was clear that I had to lower the picture size to medium jpg and I was ready to go. Mario did the line and after some hours on the computer we got this shot you see now.

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Category: "Spirit"

Photographer: Dasha Nosova

Athlete: Tor Lundström

Location: Sochi, Russian Federation

Camera: Canon EOS-1D X

Lens: EF 70-200mm f/4L USM

ISO: 200

F-Stop: 4.0

Shutter Speed: 1/4000

I was on a trip with Kevin Backstrom and Tor Lundström to film for their BYND x MDLS episode in Sochi, Russia. Our plan was to shoot backcountry as much as we could on the first days of the trip because it was already spring there, the weather was getting warmer everyday and the snow conditions were getting sketchier. It was even raining sometimes so we were pretty short on time.

Fortunately, heliboarding was still on in that area and we got a chance to have one heli day. I was a little nervous the night before because that was going to be my first time heliboarding. We got up really early and everything seemed to be perfect for the first hour or two. We flew around for a while to find some good lines. After finding the right spot, Tor was the first one to drop in and there was this natural windlip to jump at the end of his line. The filmer ‘Diggles’ and I were shooting from the top of another mountain and could hear Tor being super excited about his line on the radio. When I was taking this shot I just wanted to show his emotions after stomping the jump first try. It was a great start to a great day.

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Category: "Wings"

Photographer: Florian Jäger

Athlete: Simon Gruber

Location: Arabba, Italy

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 8-15mm f/4L Fisheye USM

ISO: 200

F-Stop: 4.0

Shutter Speed: 1/2500

Due to a super bad snow situation in the northern Alps I followed the Pirates Crew together with Freddy Evensen and Simon Gruber down to Italy where they were drowning in the white stuff at that time.

We checked a small zone right beside the slopes in Arabba for some good kicker spots and Freddy came up with the idea of this huge gap kicker. After some discussion we decided to build the kicker, which took us nearly two days of shoveling.

In his second try Simon nailed this perfect BS 7 into the landing and I got the shot of one of the biggest kickers I’ve ever seen. I used a Canon 5D MkIII and the 8-15mm fisheye zoom.

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Category: "Wings"

Photographer: Mike Yoshida

Athlete: Forest Bailey

Location: Nagano, Japan

Camera: Canon EOS-1D Mark IV

Lens: EF 24-70mm f/2.8L II USM

ISO: 1000

F-Stop: 3.5

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

This spot in particular was something we saw on the way to shoot another feature. We drove by the parking lot several times, and each day the parking lot was packed full of people. Not ideal for what we wanted to do, so we really had to plan to shoot it at the end of the day, so less people were around.

Our guide was not optimistic about shooting this location, as we were sure to get kicked out. After sessioning a spot just around the corner, we decided to give the feature a quick look to see if anyone was there. It was towards the end of the day, and luckily the parking lot was completely clear!

The crew made quick work of placing snow in the landing and prepping the in run. Just as the sun was going down we nailed this shot, cleaned up the spot, and no one knew we had even been there. Quick hit and run street spots are sometimes like getting away with burglary. It's so rewarding when you get the shot, and get out without any hassle, and without anyone knowing.

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Category: "Wings"

Photographer: Patrick Steiner

Athlete: Thomas Feurstein

Location: East Tyrol, Austria

Camera: Canon EOS 5D Mark III

Lens: EF 70-200mm f/4L USM

ISO: 100

F-Stop: 22.0

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

In 2014 some parts of Austria got tons of snow. For shooting snowboarding it was the best winter I've ever had. We used the snow to shoot all kinds of different spots. Streetrails, Wallrides, Powlines, jumps and more.

One day we decided to check out a small resort in East Tyrol. After a little scouting we found 2 nice spots to build a kicker. Especially the second spot worked out pretty well. There were many different options to shoot this jump. During the first tries the sun lit the riders from the side and it was a good light to start the session. But later this day the sun travelled behind the jump and I started shooting silhouettes. This was the time when I got the best photos of the session. To get that silhouette look I had to shoot with a shutter speed of 1/1000 and a F-stop of 22.

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Category: "Wings"

Photographer: Alexander Papis

Athlete: Fredrik Evensen

Location: Arabba, Italy

Camera: Nikon D3S

Lens: 16.0mm f/2.8

ISO: 200

F-Stop: 6.3

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

I have been shooting with the pirate crew a couple of years now. Those trips are always a guarantee for producing great footage of really talented snowboarders, in this case Fredrik Evensen. We were looking for natural features on that trip as the snow was piling up – more than two meters in a couple of days – and it kept snow-ing and snowing. We found a spot close to Arabba in the Dolomite Mountains in Italy.

There where a lot of boulder rocks lying around but just a few of them had doable in-runs and landings. Fred found this one and stomped this backie on the first try. It wasn’t easy to shoot in those conditions because my lens caught a lot of snow due to the heavy snowfall but it turned out to be one of the best shots of this trip. The lens I used was a 16mm fisheye paired with my Nikon D3s.

WI16_009664_013733-reg-mag-1920

Category: "Wings"

Photographer: Colin Adair

Athlete: Eric Jackson

Location: Revelstoke, Canada

Camera: Canon EOS-1D Mark IV

Lens: EF 35mm f/2

ISO: 800

F-Stop: 2.8

Shutter Speed: 1/1000

After several challenging months of unseasonal weather in British Columbia, the conditions had finally lined up for some classic BC backcountry shooting. The first part of this day was spent waiting for the clouds and fog to lift and visibility to improve so we could explore further into the backcountry. With the day quickly disappearing we found an area of huge pillows and features tucked away in an alpine bowl below some huge cliffs.

Eric Jackson hiked up and began scoping out the terrain immediately as the light was starting to fade. He quickly found a good take off and landing and began to hit the jump once the cameras were set up. With light dying quickly he hit the jump and hiked back up as fast as he could.

As the photographer I was also scrambling to find the best angles and make sure to get the best shot. This angle was definitely one of my favorites but I wasn’t sure if it would translate properly and with the darkness setting in I got a couple shots and moved to another spot. What I love about this photo is that is shows how big the jump is that Eric was hitting but also sets the scene showing the surroundings and landscape. I think the viewer gets a good sense of the location, time of day and that classic BC winter feeling.

Take a peak at the non-snowboarding images, including all the category winners, at redbullillume.com