2015 Results

1st Place

Duncan MacArthur - 2063 public votes

Wins: £1000 cash, plus a day trip to St. Kilda with 'GOTO St Kilda' boat trips (worth £248).

Nikon D800, Carl Zeiss Distagon 21mm, ISO 100, 1/50th, f/11 neutral density grad filter, tripod.

I was on my way down from a higher viewpoint, the light was getting too harsh. As I was approaching Cathedral rock, a bank of thick fog suddenly spilled over the cliffs above and came rolling down the mountain. The atmosphere became eery and damp, and suddenly and for hardly a second the sun burst through the fog creating a star shaped flash of light beams as its rays pierced through the holes in the rock. It was awesome, totally unexpected and I had missed it. Doing my best not to panic, and knowing that sometimes in this kind of situation the magic can happen twice, I waited. Then once again, and for a split second, another burst of sun beams pierced the rock. Click! Just magic!

What the judges say
If the name sounds familiar, it’s because Duncan was last year’s winner. This year he’s come up with another heavyweight entry which looks like a scene from a Science Fiction production. The silhouette of Cathedral Rock at Storr is often dramatic enough, but add a touch of mist and a perfectly positioned Sun to stream light through all the gaps in the rock and this is what you end up with. If there was one word to describe this photo, it would simply be “magnificent”.

2nd Place

Dave Brightwell - 1877 public votes

Wins: A Lowepro Pro Runner 300AW backpack worth £80, plus a B&B weekend break for two at the Uig Hotel worth £180.

Canon 5DMK2, Canon 17-40 f/4 L, ISO 200, 24mm, F11, 0.6s, Hitech 0.9ND Grad.

I made this shot whilst on a brief visit to Skye with some fellow photographers. We had to battle very strong winds and sea spray, but this made for a very dramatic scene that unfolded before us. I used the lobster pot as my foreground interest with the rough sea battering the pier with the dark Cuillin and dramatic sky in the background. To me, this all adds up to portray the spirit of Elgol.

What the judges say
Elgol is one of the most photographed locations on the Isle of Skye, but it’s not often you see a shot taken from this side of the slipway. Doing so opens out the background mountains, and the inclusion of the fishing creel in the foreground really sets this image apart from all the others we saw of Elgol. The green rope on the foreground creel works beautifully with the oranges in the distant clouds. The movement Dave has captured in the sea illustrates the stormy conditions and perfectly sets the atmosphere of the scene.

3rd Place

Graeme Clark - 880 public votes

Wins: A 20x24” C-Type print of your entered image, worth £50.

Nikon D810, Nikon AF-S 70-200mm f/4G ED VR (70mm), 1/20sec, f/11, ISO64.

Having visited the location at the end of Loch Fada several days before I knew that the best time would be to get there early and await the sunrise. I had also roughly worked out where I wanted to place my tripod. What I couldn’t plan for was the position of the boats but fortunately they all lined up for me.

What the judges say
We love the atmosphere of this shot. You can almost hear the silence! There are lots of layers going on here, with the foreground boats, the reflection on the water, a slight touch of distant mist, and then the mighty backdrop of Storr to finish it off. It’s one of those shots you can never tire of looking at, and the more you look at it the better it gets and the better you feel.


The top 10 entries from 2019