Surf photo by Ben Thouard wins 2019 Red Bull Illume

November 25, 2019 | Surfing
Adrian Buchan: getting barreled at Teahupoo | Photo: Ben Thouard

Ben Thouard's stunning underwater image of Adrian Buchan surfing Teahupoo was the overall winner of the 2019 Red Bull Illume Image Quest.

The greatest adventure and action sports imagery contest on the planet announced the overall and division winners at the Lumen Museum, 2,275 meters (7.464 feet) high up in Alto Adige, Italy.

Only 60 world-class pictures were selected for the finals among 59,551 photographs. That's 73 percent more than in 2016.

Thouard's breathtaking shot received a large number of votes from the 50 photo editors and digital experts who took part as judges of the event.

"In the last few years, I've dedicated time to shooting underwater and tried to find a new way of shooting waves and surfing," expressed the grand winner of the 2019 Red Bull Illume Image Quest.

"Tahiti has some of the most transparent waters in the world. I took this photo during a free surf session before the Championship Tour event in Teahupoo."

"Buchan is kicking out from the barrel through the wave, a surf technique used to escape a closeout wave. Luckily, I was right below, breathless, and with my water housing waiting for this moment."

Check out our ultimate guide to surf photography.

2019 Red Bull Illume Image Quest | Winners

Energy & Overall Winner: Ben Thouard (FRA)
Best of Instagram: Baptiste Fauchille (FRA)
Creative: Denis Klero (RUS)
Emerging: Jean-Baptiste Liautard (FRA)
Innovation: Laurence Crossman-Emms (UK)
Lifestyle: Alexander Wick (GER)
Masterpiece: Lorenz Holder (GER)
Moving Image: Rupert Walker (CAN
Playground: Lorenz Holder (GER)
Raw: Noah Wetzel (USA)
Wings: Philip Platzer (AUT)

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