The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

The photographic prowess of our readers never ceases to amaze us. These ten collections feature the most jaw-dropping user-submitted images of the year—perhaps of the decade.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

1. 98 Incredible Photos of Levitation

Man can fly, but he can't yet levitate. Maybe that's why these 98 photos of levitation—using Photoshop only to remove the strings—are so striking.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

2. 77 Upside Down Photos

The world looks different upside down...and it's not always just that it looks upside down. Things look...different...sometimes even weightless. And 86 photos from this week's Shooting Challenge celebrate that phenomenon, without the head rush.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

3. Shooting Challenge: Black Card Photography

This lead photo isn't HDR photography. Photoshop wasn't implemented to mix multiple shots. It was captured in a single exposure, and for this week's Shooting Challenge, you'll learn the technique.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

4. 111 Scenes that Lasted 1/1000 of a Second

Every image in this collection was captured in 1/1000 of a second—300x faster than a human blink—the briefest of moments that we would miss if not for the remarkable capabilities of the modern camera.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

5. Childhood Photos, Recreated as Adults Today

We all have cute childhood photos. But would they still be so adorable today? Five of our grown-up Gizmodo readers remade their childhood and family photos for this week's Shooting Challenge. And yes, you're more adorable than ever.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

6. 71 Failed Photographs...That Turned Out Incredible

Some of the best scientific discoveries have been encountered by mistake, and photography is really no different. Here are 71 photo screw-ups that should, for all intents and purposes, be wretched to look at. But they're not. They're downright beautiful.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

7. 36 Incredible Photos...That Move

They're not quite photos. They're not quite movies. They're cinemagraphs, you made them and they're so much more incredible than your run-of-the-mill animated gif. (Note: Give these images time to load, they're quite large


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

8. 74 Photos Capturing the Most Striking Colors Possible

Orange and blue aren't just great for mascots; they're complementary colors—or opposites, really, that cancel one another out when mixed. But when placed side-by-side, they're striking. Here are 74 incredible examples from this week's Shooting Challenge.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

9. The Stunning Results of Our 100th Shooting Challenge

For our 100th Shooting Challenge, I challenged you to photograph anything you like any way you like. Here's what you choose to photograph when nobody is telling you what to do.


The Best Shooting Challenges of the Year

10. 69 Photos that Pull Your Eyes From Their Sockets

Seriously, why would you even click on a story with this headline. Do you have a death-by-eye-wish? The 69 entries to this week's Shooting Challenge use leading lines to draw your eyes, even against their will, across their own images.


Been under a rock? See what else happened this year in our Best of 2011 series.