It’s difficult to comprehend the sheer volume of amazing photographs taken in 2015 until you attempt to curate a “top ten” list. From the sun-soaked towers of LA’s downtown to the suburbs of Beijing, skilled photographers are snapping away in every corner of the globe. Here are ten photos that kept us looking just a little bit longer last year—and here’s hoping your photography makes the list in 2016.
1. As the Chilean Calbuco volcano erupted, photographer Alex Vidal Breca did what any artist would do: he got closer to the action.
2. Photographer Gina Alderson-Hicks captured the pastel shades of LA architecture. Titled “Miracle Mile”, the photo was the first shot by the artist after relocating from New York to the sunny west coast city.
3. Ryan McGinley’s latest project featured the female form faced with the extremely cold conditions of upstate NY. The results may make you want to join the polar bear club—or hibernate all winter.
4. French photographer Laurent Kronental explores the majestic suburbs of Paris known as Grands Ensembles.
5. Anuar Patjane Floriuk’s “Whale’s Whisperer” is a transportive vision, and winner of the National Geographic Traveler’s photo contest 2015.
6. Irina Rozovsky’s “Salad Days” collection is everything you want dissonant photography to be and more. Chosen by VICE as one of their favorite photos of 2015.
7. Linato Zhang caught a flock of sheep walking in the smoggy haze of a suburb of Beijing, China.
8. Raphaela Rosella’s photo, taken in New South Wales, Australia, won first prize in the portrait category in World Press Photo 2015.
9. German artist Bernhard Lang won travel photographer of the year for his “Aerial Views Adria” series in the 2015 Sony World Photography Awards.
10. The dizzying photo “Construction on Call” by Geoff Williams was taken in Birmingham New Street Station in the UK.