Nature Photography Competition: August Winner!

Gerry van der Walt All Authors Leave a Comment

Last week we posted the July winners in the Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition.

Today it’s time to share the winner, runners up and highly commended images for August 2012.  As you will have seen in the previous post, we had to delay the announcement a bit due to all of our judges traveling all over the world but we have finally been able to get in touch, nail things down and confirm the winners.  Andy is however still on the road and could not get his comments on the winning images to us, even though we did receive his final scores, but once he is back I will post his comments as well.

So here we go – the top ten images from August 2012!

Winner – August 2012

August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

Chobe Ballet

Frits Hoogendijk

For his winning image Frits will, apart from progressing to the grand finals, receive:

  • ProBody Sport sponsored by Clik Elite SA
  • Copy of Colors of Southern Africa sponsored by Hannes Lochner
  • R 1,000 rental voucher from Wild Eye
  • 8GB CF Memory Card
  • Wild Eye Baseball Cap

 

Judges Feedback on Frits’ image:

Andy Biggs:  Currently on safari.

David Lloyd:  The curved water ripple the skimmer makes absolutely makes this for me! And the skimmer’s shadow too. I’d have been really pleased with this too on the technical aspects of it, the focus, depth of field, and point of view. There’s probably nothing else the photographer could have done to improve on it. But I wonder, in post-processsing, whether it could be improved further by cropping a little of the top and bottom as well?

Greg du Toit:   This image has all the technical aspects of a good photograph but what I am more interested in, is the mood and feel of the image. This shot of a skimmer is like ‘poetry in motion’. In its essence, it is a work of art. The elements of grace and precision combine amicably to make this a clear winner.

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First Runner Up – August 2012

August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

Always Watching

Image by Basie van Zyl

For his second placed image Basie will, apart from progressing to the grand finals, receive:

  • Traveler Shoulder Bag sponsored by Clik Elite SA
  • R 500 rental voucher from Wild Eye
  • 8GB CF Memory Card
  • Wild Eye Baseball Cap

 

Judges Feedback on Basie’s image:

Andy Biggs:  Currently on safari.

David Lloyd:  I really like this one. I like to judge a photo by asking myself how I would feel if I took the photo and I would have really liked to have taken this one! The composition is wonderful, there is a wonderful spot of red and the black and white stripes against the neutral tones make for nice strong shapes which I’ve always been fond of. And the upward glance and eyes of her make me ask what she is looking up to. If I was really honest, I think it could be improved even further by taking a little off the top of the picture for a semi-panoramic shape.

Greg du Toit:   This is an image I can stare at for a long time. The space at the top allows my mind to wonder before coming back to the bottom where the zebra’s stripes and the bloody nose of the lion, further hold my attention. I am sure the lion is watching a vulture but this image sparks my imagination! Any one dimensional piece of paper that can do that, is clearly a good photograph!

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Second Runner Up – August 2012

August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

Kalahari Migration

Image by Isak Pretorius

For his third placed image Isak will, apart from progressing to the grand finals, receive:

  • Memory Card Valet and Wrist Strap sponsored by Clik Elite SA
  • R250 rental voucher from Wild Eye
  • Wild Eye Baseball Cap

 

Judges Feedback on Isak’s image:

Andy Biggs:  Currently on safari.

David Lloyd:  This is the other one I’d have liked to have taken! It’s just wonderful The soft tones and soft palette adds to the soft mood of the ambling wildebeest. It’s quite a relaxing picture and I can imagine it at a meter wide on a wall somewhere. At risk of overstating my preference for cropping this week, I think that taking a tiny bit off the left might balance it a little, but in the end it stands very well as it is.

Greg du Toit:   This is also a story telling image! The wildebeest traversing the dusty floor with the acacia trees in the background and dust swirling about the place, it is almost as if I am actually there. The low horizon adds an element of space and the three wildebeest separated from the herd, give me the impression that the wildebeest are moving in a clear direction, adding tension to an otherwise peaceful scene.

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Well done and congratulations to Frits, Basie and Isak on their winning images and for progressing to the grand final where they will be in the running for the grand prize of a trip for two to the Masai Mara in 2013!

I am sure you will agree with me that the, as with all the previous months, the quality of images are amazing and makes for a great advertisement for wildlife photography.

As always, here are the highly commended images that all came very close to cracking the top 3 and making it through to the grand finals.

Highly Commended Images – August 2012

August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

Hanging Out

Image by David Dampier

This must have been an amazing sight to see.  Photographically however it is quite a tough one as it is quite a ‘messy’ scene.  David did however do a great job in capturing an amazing moment regardless of the not-ideal scene and this image shows that wildlife photography is all about content.

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August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

The Long Walk to Winter

Image by Laura Dyer

Laura used simple, yet very effective, lines in this image.  Combined with classic rule of thirds type placement it makes for a very striking image.  Even though I love the monochrome on this one I would love to see a color version as well.  I am imagining blue sky and reddish brown rocks…

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August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

Jewel of our Waterways

Image by Basie van Zyl

Basie did very well nailing this shot.  As with his image that won the July competition the colors are vibrant the image is perfectly sharp and shows a great instinct for photographing these fast and colorful little birds.

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August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

Liquid Gold

Image by Drew Cairncross

A magical African moment.  Drew did a fantastic job of getting this image nice and sharp at a shutter speed of 1/60.  What makes this image work is the fact that you visual attention is first drawn to the bright highlights in the water and then only do you see the leopard and the reflection. Great capture.

* * *

August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

Welcome to my Garden

Image by Basie van Zyl

Great technical execution, striking foreground subject, lovely colors.  Even though creating images like this is not all that difficult, Basie has taken the time to perfect the skill and this is evident from the above image.  Stunning!

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August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

River Crossing

Image by Davide Dampier

Another amazing sighting.  David did a great job of capturing the males in almost the exact same moment.  Great wildlife image.

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August 2012 - Wild Eye Nature Photography Competition

Chobe at Dusk

Image by Frits Hoogendijk

Dusk and dawn are two of the most amazing times out in the African bush and Frits did a great job of capturing that special mood.

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So there you have it.  Another amazing collection of wildlife and nature images.

To check out all the entries that were received during August click here.  You can also check out all the September entries here and then make sure to get your own images uploaded to stand a chance to win!

If you have not yet entered check out all the competition details, rules and image submission guidelines on this page which also features a gallery of the the winners thus far.

As always I look forward to hearing your comments on the winning images.  Please feel free to congratulate the winners and highly commended photographers in the comment section as well.  After all, that’s what on online community is all about!

You have just about two weeks left to get your entries for September uploaded so get shooting and check through your hard drive for those old images you have forgotten about!  They might just win you a trip for two to the Masai Mara in 2013!

Until next time.

Gerry van der Walt

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