The World Photography Organization has announced the Sony World Photography Awards-2012 shortlist. 

Considered as one of the most prestigious competitions in the world of still photography, Sony World Photography competitions get entries from all over the world.

The competition is open for various categories from amateurs, youth students and professional photographers, on various themes. The 2012 competition has garnered increased worldwide interest with over 112,000 entries from 171 countries, with the shortlisted images depicting the stories of extraordinary lives from around the world, said  the World Photography Organization in a statement.

The annual Sony World Photography Awards ceremony and gala dinner will take place at the Hilton Hotel in London's Park Lane April 26. 

The opening weekend of World Photo London will be held at Somerset House from April 27 to 30 with selected events including portfolio reviews, workshops, symposiums and the Sony World Photography Awards winners' exhibitions, which continue through to 20 May 2012.  Honorary Judges for the 2012 Awards and other international industry experts will be leading many of the festival events.

Below is a collection of some of the best photographs from the Sony World Photography Awards-2012 shortlist.