2017 International Photo Contest Tournament: Round 3

It’s time once again for the SDSU International Photo contest, featuring photos submitted by SDSU students! This year we’re choosing our People’s Choice Award through a 40-photo tournament, with winners decided by online voting right here on the Be International blog. Voting is now open for Round 3 below, so pick your favorites of the 10 photos remaining!

The theme of this year’s contest is “Defying Imagination: Images that depict something that you did not expect, or that helped you imagine life in another context during your international experience.”

The contest was open to domestic students on study abroad programs and international students studying at SDSU. For more information on the contest and to view past years’ winners visit this website.

You will vote on images head-to-head, with the winners of each vote advancing on to the next round. Voting in each round will be open for one day.

Please note: voting for the first place, second place, third place and honorable mention has already been conducted and will be announced and displayed during Family Weekend. The People’s Choice Award is… less scientific. SO VOTE EARLY AND VOTE OFTEN.

And now, the voting:

Berber Music vs. Pinwheel Dreams

Berber Music

Location: Marrakech, Morocco
Narrative: Walking the streets of Marrakech, I felt uneasy. I found myself spinning in circles trying to avoid motorcycles and pestering salesmen. Suddenly, I heard one sound above all. It was unlike any sound I had heard before, but somehow it was familiar to me. I followed the noise which led to this man. I was nervous to be in a new place, perhaps even afraid, but his music and his smile brought me comfort.
First Round result: Defeated Plaza De España 97-81.
Second Round result: Defeated Street Art by Bordalo II 131-119.

Pinwheel Dreams

Location: Kawagoe, Japan
Narrative: Every summer at the Kawagoe Shrine people gather to celebrate, and write their dreams and wishes on wind chimes. This picture shows a woman wearing her traditional yukata, standing in the middle of her dreams, and the dreams of others, wondering how many will come true.
First Round: Defeated Ideal Home 148-41.
Second Round: Defeated Fascinating Fireworks 143-75.


Tradition Speaks Volumes vs. Golden Slumbers

Tradition Speaks Volumes

Location: Beijing, China
Narrative: This photo captures the life and pure serenity of China. There is a greater meaning in traditional buildings as it reflects the respect and appreciation of Chinese history and culture. Walking along these unpaved paths, so close to the water, I was able to be in tune with the beauty that surrounds me.
First Round: Defeated Speechless 145-134.
Second Round: Defeated Fleeting Sakura 197-123.

Golden Slumbers

Location: Lima, Peru
Narrative: This photo was captured in a park that uses fountains as art displays and as ways to celebrate the Peruvian Culture. The water droplets appear as if gold pieces floating in space or streamers falling down from the sky. The gold color symbolizes one of the country’s greatest resources.
First Round: Defeated Sistine Chapel Ceiling 190-49.
Second Round: Defeated Where Worlds Collide 182-178.

Spaceship vs. Typical Tourist


Location: Liverpool, United Kingdom
Narrative: Shocked with the amazing architecture and the reigning silence in the Central Library of Liverpool, surrounded by books and letters … I imagined myself in a spaceship traveling out to explore new worlds. Reminds me of my first days in England realizing that I was out of my comfort zone trying to adapt to a new culture and environment. Represents the beginning of my experience abroad.
First Round: Defeated Tranquil Imagination 209-97.
Second Round: Defeated Snow Struck 508-264.

Typical Tourist

Location: San Diego, United States (submitted by international student)
Narrative: I was typically taking one of those touristy photographs at Ocean Beach (of a lifeguard hut numbered 2 ) when I noticed a couple’s reflection in the window. It was a beautiful coincidence, to catch with the sun setting, and I couldn’t help but feel a connection between the number two and this couple.
First Round: Defeated Das Märchen 375-96.
Second Round: Defeated The Land of Lavender 434-228.

Above the Clouds vs. Mindlessly Grazing

Above the Clouds

Location: Kota Kinabalu, Malaysia
Narrative: Who knew that the cheapest plane ticket would lead to the most rewarding experience of my life. Although you needed to reserve a spot a month prior to climb Mt. Kinabalu, an ad in my hostel advertised one extra spot so I took it. After a 6 kilometer hike to base camp and waking up at 2 a.m. to climb the last 3 kilometers, I found myself 13,435 feetabove the clouds, watching a glorious sunrise.
First Round: Defeated Grand Buddha 114-44.
Second Round: Defeated Catedral de Leon 230-171.

Mindlessly Grazing

Location: Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland
Narrative: While hiking through Lauterbrunnen, Switzerland, my program and I stumbled upon a herd of grazing cows. They were seemingly oblivious to the beauty of the cascading waterfall behind them. The scene called for a moment of introspection, as we questioned what sights we often took for granted while going through mundane, daily routines and brought a new appreciation for everyday beauty.
Final Round: Defeated Bo-Kaap Houses in front of Lion’s Head 118-84.
Second Round: Defeated Kindness of Heart 371-298.

Ponte Vecchio at Night vs. Integration

Ponte Vecchio at Night

Location: Florence, Italy
Narrative: Absolutely breathtaking and defying all of the scenes in my wildest dreams, the lights twinkle along the Ponte Vecchio at dark. I would stroll by this picturesque scene nightly to take in the serene sights and ponder life in this magical city.
First Round: Defeated They Alleys 133-57.
Second Round: Defeated Gateway: 185-149.



Location: Seoul, South Korea
Narrative: Hongdae, an exuberant neighborhood located in Seoul, is where the distinct Korean culture and customs are uniquely exhibited in a modernized fashion. Hongdae houses numerous restaurants, galleries, markets, and performance stages, allowing people like me to not only see but, altogether, live the unimaginably integrated life and culture.
First Round: Defeated A Queen’s View 86-79.
Second Round: Defeated My Moment of Awe 176-141.

See more student-submitted international photos by following SDSU Be International on Instagram.

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