The search is on to find the next winner of Close-up Photographer of the Year, in association with Affinity Photo. Photographers have until 23 May 2021 to enter the competition and be in with a chance of winning a cash prize of £2,500.

Minghui Yuan Blue Eyes Green Eyes CUPOTY©Minghui Yuan, Blue Eyes Green Eyes, 2020 CUPOTY Finalist

Close-up Photographer of the Year (CUPOTY) is an annual competition showcasing the best close-up, macro and micro photography from around the world. The competition is open to everyone, using any type of camera, phone or light microscope. To find out more visit

See our Rights On report for the 2021 Close-up Photographer of the Year.

There are nine categories in all: Animals (supported by Affinity Photo), Insects (supported by Zerene Stacker), Butterflies & Dragonflies (new for 2021 and supported by Olympus), Underwater (new for 2021 and supported by SEACAM), Plants & Fungi (supported by NOVOFLEX and Speed Graphic), Intimate Landscape, Manmade and Micro (supported by Motic Europe), as well as Young CUPOTY (supported by SIGMA) for entrants aged 17 or under.

This year the total prize fund has been boosted to £5,300, with the overall winner receiving £2,500 in cash (plus a trophy) and each category winner taking home £300 in cash, with the exception of Young Close-up Photographer of the Year 03 who will receive a SIGMA 105mm f2.8 DG DN MACRO Art lens (worth £700) USB Dock (and a trophy). 

The judging panel for CUPOTY 03 includes award-winning photographers, magazine journalists, conservationists and authors. Judging will take place in July, with the results announced in September.

Last year the competition attracted more than 6,500 entries, from 52 countries. All of the winning and shortlisted entries for CUPOTY 02 can be seen at

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