The winning image for the Deep Space category of the 2014 Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition.

The Deep Space category is for photos of anything beyond our Solar System, including stars, nebulae and galaxies. Long-exposure photography is the best way to see and capture colour views of our distant neighbourhood; visit How to photograph deep space objects for expert tips.

Winner of the APY 2014 Deep Space category

The 2014 overall winner for the Deep Space category was ‘Horsehead Nebula (IC 434)’ by Bill Snyder (USA), taken in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, California, using a Planewave 17-inch telescope, a Paramount mount and an Apogee U16 camera with a f/6.8 lens.

The Horsehead Nebula is one of the most-photographed objects in the night sky, but
this image succeeds in showing it in
a brand-new light. Rather than focusing solely on
the black silhouette of the horsehead itself, the photographer draws the eye down to the creased and folded landscape of gas and dust at its base, and across to the glowing cavity surrounding a bright star. ‘The detail beneath
the horse’s head in this image is astounding,’ said judge Will Gater.

Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition

The Astronomy Photographer of the Year competition is an annual global search for the most beautiful and spectacular visions of the cosmos by amateur and professional astrophotographers. The winning images are showcased in a stunning exhibition at the Royal Observatory Greenwich. 

Visit the IAPY 2015 exhibition