The shortlist for the National Portrait Gallery's Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2015 has been announced – and it really is a short list. Out of four photographs, one will win the prize, which aims to showcase "new work that has been submitted by some of the most exciting and cutting edge contemporary photographers."

Chosen from 4929 submissions entered by 2201 photographers across 70 countries, the shortlisted portraits are David Stewart's Five Girls 2014 (above), Ivor Prickett's photograph of an Iraqi family who fled their homes after ISIS invaded, a portrait of a woman in Oxford Street by Peter Zelewski, and Hector, a photographic portrait by Anoush Abrar inspired by Carvaggio's painting Sleeping Cupid.

Prizes will be announced on Tuesday 10 November; an exhibition of the winners will be held at the National Portrait Gallery from mid-November.