In today's age of social media, widely available professional-level camera equipment, and proliferating web platforms, the world of photography is filled with varied perspectives, talented newcomers, and an abundance of opportunities to break through. In this vein, Magnum Photos, in partnership with The Photography Show and the British arts platform IdeasTap came together to create a "30 Under 30" competition, aimed at highlighting the next generation of documentary photographers.

The competition was open worldwide to all photographers between the ages of 18 and 30. Entrants were asked to submit five documentary photos from a narrative project. Based on the criteria of "a clear storyline, technique, execution, concept, originality and the ability to successfully communicate their project", the jury was able to narrow down hundreds of applications to a shortlist of 30 talented photographers. 

We're highlighting some of our favorite pictures from the competition's shortlist. With photographers hailing from all corners of the globe, focusing on subjects ranging from the very local to the truly global, these highlights just scratch the surface of what the future of documentary photography holds. Congratulations to all of the winning photographers!


Editor's Note: We are so impressed with this selection of finalists that we are featuring several of their projects in depth on LensCulture. From overpopulation in Singapore, to youthful rebellion in Iran, to female soldiers in Myanmar, we are certainly looking forward to any further projects these promising photographers have in store.