Connect with us
background

Winners - Underwater Photography Contests

February 2018 Photo Contest Winner and Review

Published

on

WINNER CHOSEN AND REVIEW BY SCUBAVERSE.COM’S UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHY EDITORS NICK & CAROLINE ROBERTSON-BROWN

WINNER: Home is where the heart is by Katie Osborne

PHOTOLINK: https://www.scubaverse.com/contestants/home-is-where-the-heart-is/

When judging any underwater photography competition, the first thing we do is ask of each image: Is it in focus? The main subject has to be pin sharp. Is it exposed correctly?

We then look at lighting (photography is all about light) and composition. Backscatter, hot spots of light, messy backgrounds all might see your image lose out.

Then there are other considerations that might get you knocked out of the first round: Was the image taken underwater? After all it is an underwater photography competition! Were any animals distressed or harassed to get the image? Was any environmental damage done to get the shot?

Once we have whittled out the images that do not pass these criteria, it is time to get down to picking a winner. A shot that makes us both go wow – I wish I had taken that!

February 2018

The shortest month of the year turned out to have a whole load of great images! The February competition saw some lovely macro images and some really creative shots. Well done to all those who entered. As always, we cannot comment on every image entered, but will do our best to pick out those we like, found interesting or just wanted to talk about.

Our Favourites

Caroline

Shaun the Sheep by Jeen Snidvongs: I love these nudibranchs! They are tiny and very hard to even catch in a shot. I love the curve, the black background, the “eye” contact. My only comment is that the subject is just a bit too central in the shot.

Seashell eyes in the darkness by Raffaele Livornese: Lovely macro shot! Simple and yet very effective. The eyes can really be the key to photography, and it is so hard to show character in these molluscs. I love the texture and colour of the shell. Gorgeous.

Pygmy Pregnant by Nadia Chiesi: A lovely portrait of the diminutive pygmy seahorse. Nice depth of field. Just a shame it is not just a little turned to get both eyes looking at the camera (something I know from experience is very difficult) and the shadow is a little heavy on the right hand side. But a super pin-sharp shot.

Hairy Hunter by Pete McGee: Lovely backlit hairy frogfish. These frogfish are just about the perfect subject for back-lighting, as it really accentuates the hairs. I just wish the extended “fishing rod” had also been in focus.

Mirroring by Michal Černý: Lovely black-background shot, with the added bonus of getting a smashing reflection at the surface. To get such calm water, on a night dive, and to get this shot is fantastic.

Fresh Water Jellyfish by Michal Černý: I also really like this shot. I like the depth of field selection to have one of the jellyfish in focus and one out.

Cleaning by Walter Bassi: A super behaviour shot of an eel being cleaned by a shrimp. Lovely lighting.

Dancing Fang Blenny by Hailey Elizabeth: Smashing shot Hailey! Great black-background. Lovely eye contact.

Celestial Being by Pete McGee: Lovely shot! The sun-beams are fantastic and to catch a cuttlefish in this light is a real treat. Perhaps a bit more strobe light on the top of the cuttlefish might have worked better?

Swedish Nudi by Marie Sand: Really nice shot of a nudibranch with a black background.

Home is where the heart is by Katie Osborne: This shot tells a sad story, but with a happy twist. It is sad to see any litter in the ocean, but some things do make homes for marine life. Great behaviour shot.

Nick

Serpiola’s Eye by Diogo Sayanda: Nicely lit close-up of the critter’s eye. Black background helps to focus your view on the eye.

Freediver at the wreck by Pavol Ivanov: This image has a nice composition with apposing diagonals and a school of small fish swooping around the stern. A shame that the subject is touching the wreck and his weight belt is untidy.

Trucks by Raffaele Livornese: The subjects are well lit, albeit a bit dark in the centre, and I personally, like the fish-eye effect on the ship’s spars. Could do with a clear subject to draw the eye in.

Jump by Raffaele Livornese: This is a well thought out snooted close-up. The colours, against a black background, really stand out. The depth of field is really small and I am not sure the focus is quite on the right spot.

Crab by Rajiv Bhambri: I was really drawn to the image by the eye looking straight at the camera. The depth of field is perfect for this shot and the black background isolates the subject.

Juvenile Trunkfish by Rajiv Bhambri: This displays an alternative style of isolating the subject – by using bokeh for the background. The green eyes appear to be glowing.

Red Passion by Errico Gaetano: This is beautifully lit & composed. I can almost feel the movement of the small fish as they swoop down through the image.

Mirroring by Michal Černý: This is a lovely reflection shot on a night dive. The reflection of the colours and shape of the needlefish is wonderful.

Fresh Water Jellyfish by Michal Černý: This is a beautiful macro shot of tiny freshwater jellyfish in blackwater. The one in the background in bokeh and the overall effect is very appealing.

Cleaning by Walter Bassi: Lovely behaviour shot of a cleaner shrimp attending the dentistry of this moray. Lovely eye contact too.

Sweet Dad by Walter Bassi: This is also a lovely behaviour shot showing the male of the species mouth brooding. The depth of field is very small and whilst the eggs are all sharp, the eye of the adult looks a bit soft.

Glass Wall by Walter Bassi: Trying to capture this scene is harder than it looks. It truly looks like a wall of fish just before they turn and swoop away.

Celestial Being by Pete McGee: Great shot of a cuttlefish lit by the photographer and shards of sunlight against the blue background. From a purist point of view, the subject is a little “bullseye” (in the centre) but it is still a lovely shot.

Nudibranch by Andrea Serri: Interesting, almost abstract, take on a nudibranch. The background is all a bit messy however, and is a distraction.

Swedish Nudi by Marie Sand: I really like the angle and setting of this nudibranch. It looks like it is covered in dreadlocks and it really stands out against the black. I might have moved the camera to the left (if it was possible) so the head was not right in the centre.

Shaun the Sheep by Anne-Laure Rucquoi: This has a nice angle on “Shaun” and is a pleasing shot. It is also a tough shot, as these nudibranchs are tiny. However, with all the space in front of it, did you need to clip is rear?

Home is where the heart is by Katie Osborne: When you are diving with a macro lens and you come across a subject like this, you know you are going to get some super shots. I love the diagonal moving away from the lens which gives a 3D effect to the octopus.

Baby Seahorse by Katie Osborne: I love the way the seahorse has been isolated and yet its environment is still obvious. Lovely detail on the subject too.

After much deliberations between our two judges….

There were lots of interesting shots entered into February’s contest; we picked out many different shots from each other. Most of the shots this month seemed to be macro, too. We deliberated for quite a while! Here are the results:

Winner: Home is where the heart is by Katie Osborne

Joint Runner-Up: Mirroring by Michal Černý & Fresh Water Jellyfish by Michal Černý – as we could not decide between us which one of his shots we liked best!

Third Place: Celestial Being by Pete McGee

Congratulations to those who were placed – some really nice images here, and well done to all those that entered. We cannot wait to see what March has to offer.

[hr style=”single”]

Scubaverse.com’s March 2018 Underwater Photo Contest is now open! Enter as many as three of your underwater photos here.

Nick and Caroline (Frogfish Photography) are a married couple of conservation driven underwater photo-journalists and authors. Both have honours degrees from Manchester University, in Environmental Biology and Biology respectively, with Nick being a Fellow of the Royal Photographic Society, a former high school science teacher with a DipEd in Teaching Studies. Caroline has an MSc in Animal Behaviour specializing in Caribbean Ecology. They are multiple award-winning photographers and along with 4 published books, feature regularly in the diving, wildlife and international press They are the Underwater Photography and Deputy Editors at Scubaverse and Dive Travel Adventures. Winners of the Caribbean Tourism Organization Photo-journalist of the Year for a feature on Shark Diving in The Bahamas, and they have been placed in every year they have entered. Nick and Caroline regularly use their free time to visit schools, both in the UK and on their travels, to discuss the important issues of marine conservation, sharks and plastic pollution. They are ambassadors for Sharks4Kids and founders of SeaStraw. They are Dive Ambassadors for The Islands of The Bahamas and are supported by Mares, Paralenz, Nauticam and Olympus. To find out more visit www.frogfishphotography.com

Winners - Underwater Photography Contests

March 2021 Photo Contest Winner and Review

Published

on

WINNER CHOSEN AND REVIEW BY SCUBAVERSE.COM’S UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHY EDITOR NICK ROBERTSON-BROWN

WINNER: Mimic by Christian Horras

Wow! Another bumper month with incredible images, both macro and wide angle, from all around the world. 

When judging any underwater photography competition, the first thing I do is ask of each image: Is it in focus? The main subject has to be pin sharp. Is it exposed correctly?

I then look at lighting (photography is all about light) and composition. Backscatter, hot spots of light, messy backgrounds: all might see your image lose out.

Then there are other considerations that might get you knocked out of the first round: Was the image taken underwater? After all it is an underwater photography competition! Were any animals distressed or harassed to get the image? Was any environmental damage done to get the shot?

Once I have whittled out the images that do not pass these criteria, it is time to get down to picking a winner. A shot that makes me go wow – I wish I had taken that!


Alas I cannot discuss each and every image but here are a few that caught my eye and why:

Glossodoris sp. “Rhinopore” by Moby Duarte: Smashing image of a beautiful nudibranch with the rhinophores in pin-sharp focus. The angle is perfect, with the camera at “eye-level”. The low depth of field and the black background all add to this lovely image.

Caddis fly larva (Phryganea sp.): A subject I have not seen before, and a new species is always a bonus when judging a photo competition. Lovely detail in sharp focus including both subject and its environment.

Let’s play! by Ben VERDEILLE: What a lovely moment captures here. A sealion getting ready to play with the photographer using an unfortunate seastar as a toy.

Blue Shark by Mariamillgate: Such beautiful sharks. lovely image capturing motion and eye-contact.

Face to face by Giacomo Antonio Rossi: Lovely image of a Blue Shark interacting with a freediving photographer.

On the Edge by Patricia Pat A Sinclair: A gorgeous nudi just reaching the very edge of its domain. Lots of negative space allowing room for us to imagine the path it might take.

School of Batfish by Zaflee Bin Md Suibarek: Lovely batfish image with the sunburst on the surface really enhancing the shot. Subtle lighting and with one batfish looking at the camera, this is lovely.

Hauling the net by Atle Ove Martinussen: An excellent split shot with good focus both above and blow the water line. Just a little too much left hand strobe, which could be fixed in post-edit. An engaging shot nonetheless.

Nudi in the dark by Atle Ove Martinussen: Lovely colours that pop out of the screen. Just needed a bit more room on the right hand side.

Nice surprise under the boat by Raffaele: Nice composition with the anemonefish, diver and the dive boat up above. I would have cropped out the unlit part of the anemone at the bottom of the frame I think.

Stage fright by Suliman A: A nice protrait of a hermit crab. The black background really helps make is stand out.

Montenegro Jaz beach night dive by Nikola Doder: Lovely pin-shark focus on the eyes. Great use of depth of field. Good image.

Geometric perfection by Alexandre Despras: Lovely shot. Simple yet stunning. Letting the natural form be the star.

Hypselodoris tryoni at lunch by Louis Costes: Wow – so many good nudi shots this month and this one stands out due to the lovely blue background and the subject in focus popping out.

Anker’s Whip Coral Shrimp by Marc Eeckhaut: Lovely diagonal, lovely bokeh background with the two shrimps in perfect position.

Turtle Silhouette by MichaelG: Simple yet super, black vignetting, the blue inner circle and the silhouette of the turtle against the blue. Lovely.

Baby Grouper by Carolina Marcias: Lovely expression on this grouper portrait. Both eyes in view and engaging with the photographer.

The Devil by Sylvain Corbel: A very dramatic fish portrait. Lovely eye-contact. Super isolation of the subject.

Longimanus by Christian Horras: Oceanic Whitetip Shark with sun rays coming down from above. Stunning.

Mimic by Christian Horras: This image really stands out from the crowd. The eyes of the octopus against the bokeh background is simple yet stunning. The way the animals just seems to melt into its environment is amazing. Well done for taking the shot so low to the ground – it makes all the difference.

A white among the reds by Bruno Labins: I really like this image. The blue background with the school of red (and one white) fish really works well. The fact that they are swimming towards the photographer is great.

Coming towards me with his accolytes by Bruno Labins: Another stunning image. Balanced light, swimming towards the viewer, three fins on display – smashing shot.

Walking upside down by Lorenzo Zacchetti: A very interesting behaviour captured by this image. Lovely reflection too.

Manta Rays’ dance in the blue of the Indian Ocean by Oksana Maksymova: What a moment – to have three mantas lining up to swim right past you. Lovey image.

Sunrise at the end of a Belgian winter dive by Kristof Goovaerts: Super diver portrait. The sunlight on the surface above, the divers eyes well lit (which in a black skirted mask can be difficult)


After much deliberation by our judge….

The results

Winner: Mimic by Christian Horras

Runner-up: Coming towards me with his accolytes by Bruno Labins

Third Place: Glossodoris sp. “Rhinopore” by Moby Duarte

Highly Commended: The Devil by Sylvain Corbel

Congratulations to those who were placed – there were a number of excellent images, and well done to all those that entered.

Scubaverse.com’s April 2021 Underwater Photo Contest is now open! Enter as many as three of your underwater photos here.

Continue Reading

Winners - Underwater Photography Contests

February 2021 Photo Contest Winner and Review

Published

on

WINNER CHOSEN AND REVIEW BY SCUBAVERSE.COM’S UNDERWATER PHOTOGRAPHY EDITOR NICK ROBERTSON-BROWN

WINNER: Sepiola in motion by Yann Toso

Wow! Another bumper month with incredible images, both macro and wide angle, from all around the world. 

When judging any underwater photography competition, the first thing I do is ask of each image: Is it in focus? The main subject has to be pin sharp. Is it exposed correctly?

I then look at lighting (photography is all about light) and composition. Backscatter, hot spots of light, messy backgrounds: all might see your image lose out.

Then there are other considerations that might get you knocked out of the first round: Was the image taken underwater? After all it is an underwater photography competition! Were any animals distressed or harassed to get the image? Was any environmental damage done to get the shot?

Once I have whittled out the images that do not pass these criteria, it is time to get down to picking a winner. A shot that makes me go wow – I wish I had taken that!


Alas I cannot discuss each and every image but here are a few that caught my eye and why:

Mars Attacks by Pietro Cremone: A great title for a super blackwater shot. I might have cropped  in a little I think and reduced the negative space just a touch. A difficult subject captured very well.

Predation by Pietro Cremone: Amazing behaviour shot of a squid feeding at night. Bravo!

From the Below by Raffaele: Stunning Manta at night shot. Time the shot just right to get a lovely pose and the lighting from the boat above illuminating the underside of the manta.

Mobulas of Misool by Patricia Dusman: A striking high key image of mobulas swimming under a bait ball. Very creative and an image that really catches the eye. Another excellent image.

Lembeh Nudibranch by Patricia Dusman: Lovely depth of field on this nudibranch shot. The blurred background really makes the head and especially the rhinophores stand out.

Poetic gorgon’s head, and a flying little nudi by Miguel Ramirez: I love a basket star image and the little critter flying across the background adds a little extra to what was already a lovely shot.

Jewel Nudi by Miguel Ramirez: Stunning nudi shot with blurred background.

Odontaspis ferox by Claude Lespagne: Really engaging portrait of a Smalltooth Sand Tiger Shark. A great view of the teeth too.

Nudibranchia by Claude Lespagne: Lovely texture on this image. The nudibranch looks like it is make from blue velvet and you can almost feel it by just looking at the photo. Focus is perfect.

Crevette nettoyeuse by Patrice Privé: Lovely macro shrimp shot. They detail and the catch light in the eyes is just stunning.

Hippocampes by Patrice Privé: Wow – this image just jumps out from the page. The focus on the eye and the punk hair do really work in black and white. I might have just tones down the overexposed nose a little. But this is a stunner.

Lady Bug on Tunicate by Olivier Martinez: I am always amazed at these super macro shots capturing the tiniest of critters on the reef. The blue is beautiful and it is great to have the subject with both eyes in shot.

Dancing of humpackwhale by Benjamin Bersans: The snorkeler in the top corner of the image really makes this shot, as it makes you feel like you know just how special it would be if that was you!

Goliath by Bruno Labins: The light on the surface of the water, just above the main subject, is lovely.

Crocodile by Bruno Labins: All legs and teeth.. this croc shot made me smile. Great that the shot show the seagrass environment too.

The color purple by Marc Eeckhaut: Love these flamboyant cuttlefish. They are always tough to shoot on dark and difficult backgrounds, but this image really shows how lovely they are.

Humpback Whales in Bora Bora by Stephan Debelle: Lovely shot with the mother and calf at the surface. Must have been an amazing experience.

John Dory by Colin Garrett: These really are a lovely looking fish and this side on shot, with a black background, shows off their unusual pattern and shape.

Bottlenose Dolphin by Colin Garrett: Lovely eye contact and detail on this close encounter with a dolphin.

Surfacing after a relaxing dive by Kristof Goovaerts: We do not see many diver portrait shots in this competition and this is a lovely example with the sunlight shining down perfectly on the diver’s face. I like that the diver is looking up to the surface rather than directly at the camera.

SS Thistlegorm by Christian Horras: This shot is so atmospheric. A great take on a well photographed wreck. I love the anchor, the diver is in a great position and the bow of the wreck looming out of the background. Smashing image.

Nudibranch Trinchesia sp. by Oksana Maksymova: A simple yet stunning composition. The bokeh is perfect. the colours subtle. I love this.

Ultra Violet Cerianthus by Simone Musumeci: Using UV light on a night dive can bring some rewarding photographic results and the motion of the current adds to this unusual image.

Jellyfish palau by Dave Weeks: A simple shot, but there is something about the colours that I really like, along with the reflection.

Stingray Smile by MichaelG: A lovely shot that will make everyone that sees it smile.

Black Jelly by MichaelG: Simple yet stunning. An almost abstract image of a jellyfish in black and white. Lots of interesting detail. This really jumps out from my screen.

Microlipophrys canevae by Yann Toso: Lovely portrait of this blenny with the oranges and yellows creating a pleasing image to look at. Good use of depth of field and a cute subject too.

Blue Planet by Kaya Alptunaer: Stunning! Simplicity is sometimes best. The richness of the blue against the black background makes the subject stand out. Showing the feeding behaviour of the sea star just adds to this lovely shot. Finding a subject and then getting the very best shot of it you can. The fact you took this with a compact camera is fabulous. Well done!

Open your wings by Giacomo Antonio Rossi. Lovely full underside shot of a manta. The surface of the water really adds to this super image.

Jureles by Giacomo Antonio Rossi: Love this shot of a bait ball swimming just above the sea bed. The sandy ripples really add to the image.

Sepiola in motion by Yann Toso: A lovely motion shot of a squid at night. A beautiful subject captured expertly well.

Valentine’s day by Novrizal Herdananto: A perfect shot for the February competition! What a lovely image of these two stunning nudibranchs. Almost looks like a mirror image.


After much deliberation by our judge….

The results

Winner: Sepiola in motion by Yann Toso

Runner-up: Nudibranch Trinchesia sp. by Oksana Maksymova

Third Place: SS Thistlegorm by Christian Horras

Highly Commended: Blue Planet by Kaya Alptunaer

Highly Commended: Black Jelly by MichaelG

Congratulations to those who were placed – there were a number of excellent images, and well done to all those that entered.

Scubaverse.com’s March 2021 Underwater Photo Contest is now open! Enter as many as three of your underwater photos here.

Continue Reading

E-Newsletter Sign up!

Competitions

Explore the amazing triangle of Red Sea Reefs - The Brothers, Daedalus and Elphinstone on board the brand new liveaboard Big Blue.  With an option to add on a week at Roots Red Sea before or after. 

Strong currents and deep blue water are the catalysts that bring the pelagic species flocking to these reefs. The reefs themselves provide exquisite homes for a multitude of marine life.  The wafting soft corals are adorned with thousands of colourful fish. The gorgonian fans and hard corals provide magnificent back drops, all being patrolled by the reef’s predatory species.

£1475 per person based on double occupancy.  Soft all inclusive board basis, buffet meals with snacks, tea and coffee always available.  Add a week on at Roots Red Sea Resort before or after the liveaboard for just £725pp.  Flights and transfers are included.  See our brochure linked above for the full itinerary.

This trip will be hosted by The Scuba Place.  Come Dive with Us!

Call 020 3515 9955 or email john@thescubaplace.co.uk

www.thescubaplace.co.uk

More Less

Instagram Feed

Popular