Photography Contest MIMESISWhen Nature inspires technology!

© Lolo, Wipplay Photo Fund - © Cyril Abad, Carbon fibers, Safran Photo Fund

2 September > 4 November

2 September > 4 November

Capture Nature's treasures that resonate with technology


When Nature inspires technology!

Dragonfly wings, granite striations, insects alveoli, crystals, spiders’ silk, jellyfish propulsion, waves oscillation…

Since the beginning of life on Earth 4 billion years ago, the mineral, vegetal and animal genius has developed in shapes, matters and systems which have the most incredible abilities: to breath, to light up, to warm up, to resist, and even to fly.

From structures and textures to organizations, some high technology inventions seem to be directly inspired by Nature.

With the photo contest “MIMESIS”, opened from September 2th to November 4th, Safran invites you to capture - from up close or far away - the treasures of Nature that illustrate these convergences and resonances with technology, whether they are real or not…

Time to grab your camera!

A contest

Some inspirations

© Stas Bartnikas
© Denis Dubesset
© Stas Bartnikas
© Alexandre Darmon
© Denis Dubesset
© Alexandre Darmon

Wish to share your photos?


The magic of marine organisms revealed by the image !

To reveal the full biomimetic potential of living organisms, Patrick Flammang has chosen some of the images entered in the competition to describe them to us by pointing out some impressive details.

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On the way to the microcosm, with Denis Dubesset

To inspire your next participations, we asked Denis Dubesset, jury of the competition and French photographer who attaches his personal style to the magic of the moment, to give us advice on how to succeed in his macro photography.

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Get some height with Stas Bartnikas

To inspire the contest participants, we asked Stas Bartnikas - an aerial photographer based in Moscow - to share some aspects of his work with us, here.

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At the heart of animal, vegetable and mineral genius

To inspire your next participations, here are some images that highlight 100% natural creations. Plants, animals and minerals guaranteed!

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Photograph technology in its natural state

To inspire contest participants, we asked Kalina Raskin - a Physical-Chemical engineer and Doctor in Neuroscience - to mention these living organisms capable of inspiring technology.

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Photograph the treasures of Nature in resonance with technology

To immortalize - from near and far - the treasures of Nature. Here are some explanations on this very special theme.

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We build the future

Discover the new institutional film of the Safran Group.

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Jury Prizes

1st prize

Camera with macro lens + a book of photographs + some surprises from Safran

2nd prize

Drone for photo and video + a book of photographs + some surprises from Safran

3rd prize

Microscope with digital eyepiece + a book of photographs + some surprises from Safran

Public Prizes

1st prize

A winning photo art print + a book of photographs + some surprises from Safran

2nd prize

An art print of the winning photo + some surprises from Safran

3rd prize

An art print of the winning photo + some surprises from Safran

The jury

Alexandre Darmon

Co-founder of AiR

Alexandre Darmon is the co-founder of AiR - Art in Research.

Graduated from the Ecole Centrale of Lyon and the Imperial College of London, Alexandre Darmon got a Master in Physics from the Ecole Normale Supérieure and a doctorate in Physics of liquid crystals from the Ecole Supérieure of Physics and Industrial Chemistry of Paris.

Alexandre has always been a photography passionate ( With liquid crystals, his microscope and three years ahead of him, Alexandre has found his playground to blossom. It’s during a trip to Kyoto that he combines his passion for photography and his love for sciences. In 2017, he co-founds the galleryAiR - Art in Research and works today both as a photographer and a curator ; with the mission to reveal to the world the radical and fundamental beauty hidden in our research laboratories.

Denis Dubesset


Born in 1978, Denis Dubesset becomes an archaeologist after a master in Art History. He (re)discover photography in 2009. He publishes his first book three years later and becomes a professional photographer. Denis Dubesset likes to observe and contemplate, which he expresses fully through photography. His personal style focuses on the essential and on the magic of the moment.

Since 2012, he has written and published five books. Through theses books, he wishes to help his readers develop their creativity and find their own photographic identity. He addresses thematics such as framing, close-up photography, minimalism and style in photography. His work has been translated and published in several European countries (Germany, Spain, Italy), but also in Brazil. His work is also regularly exhibited ; he gives conferences and write articles for the specialized press.

Dominique Leglu

Editorial director of Sciences et Avenir

Editorial director of the scientific magazine SCIENCES ET AVENIR + WEB SITE (8 million visits per month), based in Paris since 2003, and of LA RECHERCHE since 2017. Head of the scientific section of daily LIBERATION for 14 years before being associate chief editor for 3 years.

I worked for French TV (Arte, France2), for publishers (Robert Laffont), wrote 5 books.
Former president of the French association of science journalists (AJSPI) and delegate to EUSJA (European Union of science journalists association).

Studies in particle physics (PhD, 1978, College de France in Paris) and in arms control (M. Sc, 2002, Uni Marne-la-Vallée). “Grand Prize of scientific divulgation” from the French academy of science. Jean Perrin prize from the French physics society. Member of CA Paris-Saclay University.

Born in Dordogne (south West of France), I love truffle and Bordeaux wine.

Julie Plus

Wipplay CEO

Surrounded by a formidable team and major photographic agencies, Julie Plus launched at the end of 2012, a fun site entirely dedicated to lovers of photography. An image-oriented social network focused on excellence, the site quickly became a laboratory for creative meetings between professionals and amateurs.

Kalina Raskin

Physicochemical engineer and doctor of biology, director of the European Center of Excellence in Biomimicry (CEEBIOS)

Kalina Raskin is an engineer in physics and chemistry and a PhD in biology. For the last ten years, Kalina has been involved in structuring the French network in biomimetics and connecting it to international skills, actively disseminating bioinspiration to innovation actors and building dedicated tools and platforms for companies but also public institutions. She participates in different expert groups (ISO, European commission, scientific journals and communities,...) and gives lectures in major French universities and engineering schools. She is currently the managing director of CEEBIOS, the French center for the implementation of biomimetics as a catalysor of responsible R&D.

Marie-Laure Estignard

Director of the musée des Arts et Métiers

Chief curator and art historian, Marie-Laure Estignard is the director of the musée des Arts et Métiers (Paris) since May 2019. She was previously deputy director of the musée national de la Marine (Paris), in charge of the renovation of the museum. From 2011 to 2016, Marie-Laure Estignard worked for the urban community of Saint-Quentin-en-Yvelines.
She was first director of the city museum and of the City of Art and History label, before becoming director of cultural development. From 2009 to 2011, she was researcher in contemporary architecture at the Île-de-France Region and worked in particular on large complexes.
Previously, she worked at Orange in marketing and communication (1991-2009).

Pascale Dubois

Communication and Sponsorship Director Safran

After a degree in history, Pascale works as a journalist then as responsible of Press Relationships for various companies until 1989. She becomes Assistant Director of the Communication of the BTP Company from 1989 to 1993. From 1994, she is head of the Press Relationship and Finance Analysts Department at Euro RSCG Finances.

In 1996, she starts working for the Colas Group (Bouygues Group) where she is first Head of Internal Communication before being nominated Director of Communication in 2000. In May 2008, she joins Safran where she is also responsible of the patronage since September 2013.

Passionate about communication at the heart of industry, yesterday on the road, today in the air, Pascale truly enjoys having such a singular job. Communicating in an enterprise is telling in words and images the work of women and men that compose it. And at Safran, flagship of the international industry and aeronautics, space and defense first rank manufacturer, it’s a big deal! Through her work, Pascale loves to conjugate many paradoxes : rigor and creativity, strategy and intuition, strong vision and field proximity. She is a master working with words and organizing of big events, which she does with a team of communication professionals from the group and its subsidiaries.

Stas Bartnikas


Stas Bartnikas, 47, lives in Moscow. Aerial photography combines his love for travelling with a passion for aviation. He flies in small planes and helicopters and takes pictures of Nature that look like abstract paintings. His shots were published in magazines across Russia and Europe such as Sunday Times Travel magazine, Vanity Fair, Maxim, GEO, Bild, View, L’Officiel Voyage and were featured in NatGeo’s Photo of the Day and Daily Dozen rubrics number of times.

Currently Stas is @natgeoyourshot contributing photographer. He also won over 130 awards at the prestigious contests, such as IPA, TIFA, MIFA, PX3, Chromatic Photo Awards, Siena International, Natgeo Travel Photo Award. His pictures are presented at Avivson gallery, London and are also part of some private collections.

“I call my style of photography “aero-art”. I am convinced that Mother Nature is the most sophisticated painter and I see it as my mission to capture its beauty in its perfect form. Aerial photography allows us to see places that are inaccessible on foot, shows very different perspective and enables capturing the beauty of our Earth in its full glory and uniqueness. I think that beautiful images portraying our planet invoke deep feelings of love, admiration and respect towards the Nature. And I believe that people tend to protect what they love”

Sylvaine Picard

Signal and Information Technologies of Safran Tech and amateur photographer

Owner of a PhD in image processing, Sylvaine Picard has dedicated her career to image analysis. From remote sensing to professional video all the way through biometry, this discipline allows her to work in various technology fields.

She now runs a research team at Safran. With artificial intelligence algorithms applied to image, the use of images in our daily life and in industrial context has burst. With her team, she contributes to the tech progress of the Safran group in that field.

Her taste for image doesn’t limit itself to the professional sphere, she also practices photography, capturing Nature whenever she get the chance.

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Safran Group

For decades, Safran has operated in the fields of aeronautics (propulsion, equipment, aircraft interiors), defense and space.

With the high-tech products that we invent, manufacture and maintain in service, we build relationships of trust with all of our partners every day.

It is this confidence that gives the women and men of Safran the audacity to innovate and go further in areas where technology matters at all times.


Sciences et Avenir

Understanding the future through science.

With a journalistic approach and a positive, responsible tone, Sciences et Avenir offers an essential culture for understanding and acting in our world.

For our 3 million readers, our nearly 9 million Internet fans each month on our Website, our 2 million facebook friends and 130,000 Twitter subscribers, Sciences et Avenir deciphers current advancement in science, in dialogue with researchers/creators of new ideas. Our magazine is also engaged in the fight against fake news, which is proliferating in the scientific and medical world.

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The Musée des Arts et Métiers

The Musée des Arts et Métiers is one of the most ancient technical and industrial museum of the world. As a component of the Conservatoire national des arts et métiers (Cnam), its history is closely linked to it.

Since its foundation in 1794, its collections have widen with many additions, precious testimonies of the evolution of scientific knowledge and technical progress. The museum has now an exceptional collection, remarkable in volume (close to 80,000 objects and 15,000 drawings) and in diversity with the multitude of thematic it covers. Through seven big collections (Scientific instruments, Materials, Construction, Communication, Mechanics, Energy and Transport), the museum presents around 2,500 objects which reflects the various facets of the sciences and techniques history.

It’s a opportunity to discover one of the most atypical places : the Saint-Martin-des-Champs former priory which was considered the “temple” of technique during the French Revolution. Among the most remarkable pieces, you can discover Jacques Alexandre Charles’s physics cabinet and Antoine Laurent Lavoisier’s laboratory, Louis Ferdinand Berthoud’s clocks collection, Jacques Vaucanson’s loom, the Chappe telegraph, the Cugnot fardier or Clément Ader’s Plane number 3.

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Let the photography surface helps surface popular, talented and spontaneous photography.

The web platform is open to all, both amateur and professional photographers, and gives opportunities to everyone to showcase their talents through weekly photo competitions.

Wipplay aims to inspire its community with original themes for its contests. With a “large depth of field”, the Wipplay team nourishes the creativity among more than 50,000 participants and awakens new prodigies every day. Here, you will find popular photography at its best.

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Photography contestMIMESISWhen Nature inspires technology!