1. Award

    Winners have been announced, and I am very pleased to say that for the second time I have won the Botanical Britain category in the British Wildlife Photography Awards. Taken on the north Kent coast, this image of kelp was captured at dawn on a receding tide. I initially went there to photograph an entirely different scene but the weather didn’t cooperate and so, with an open mind, went searching for alternatives. I was immediately struck by the water moving back and forth along the kelp-bed channels, and how by using a slow shutter-speed a soft, ethereal effect could be created. Very much looking forward to the awards ceremony, tomorrow, and meeting other winning and commended photographers. Congratulations to all.

    Nikon D810, 20mm, ISO 100, 2.5 secs, f/16, Lee 0.6 hard-edge grad filter, Benbo tripod.

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  2. Award

    There are just a few competitions that I enter most years which include Wildlife Photographer of Year, British Wildlife Photography Awards and International Garden Photographer of the Year. This year, for the first time, I thought I would try my luck (you never know whether you will be successful or not) with the Italian competition – Asferico: International Nature Photography Competition. There are some exceptional images (the overall winner is yet to be revealed) with a strong, creative bias and amongst those awarded only 4 are represented from the UK and so I was especially happy to be awarded Highly Commended in the Plants and Fungi category with my image of a white helleborine at twilight.

    Taken as part of my Twilight project (you can view the series here) I recall, vividly, the evening I captured this image. As with most of my personal work I concentrate on those areas very close to where I live and there is a reserve not far away that each year has many white helleborines flowering in the same place. They have a wonderful structure and I was sure they would make an interesting silhouette. After some time scrambling around on all fours, in the fading light, moving from one flower to another desperately trying to seek out a gap in the trees in which I could place the flower I had all but given up hope until suddenly, there it was. Not only a window in which to frame it but one that mimicked its shape too! Those moments when it all comes together are rare but always make the effort more than worthwhile.


    Nikon D300s, 200mm Micro, ISO 200, 0.4 sec. f/4, beanbag, cable release, mirror-lock.


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