Pictures: Peter Mysticdidge Plorin, Germany; Louise Porter, USA; Toby Pickard, UK, courtesy Sony World Photography Awards 2013

The 2013 contest pulled in more than 122,000 entries, the highest in its history.

The shortlist of 14 British photographers includes six amateurs in the Open category and three in the Youth section.

A spokesman said: ‘Topics ranged from haunting shots of the Syrian conflict to the Obama presidential campaign; an intimate study of cinema-goers in Kabul – to quirky and witty shots of the animal kingdom.’

The images will go on show at Somerset House in London from 26 April-12 May.

The overall winners will be announced on 25 April.