British Nature in Black and White Winner. Blue on Black. Blue Shark, Cornwall, England. Photo by Alexander Mustard
How is the winning shot "wildlife"??
Is the goose a pet? Why can't a wild goose be photographed in a city?
It is as wild as a pigeon in a city... not quite the definition of wildlife...
But why is a pigeon in a city less wild than a pigeon in a forest? Or pigeon in a field?
These photos were taken using cameras.
some great shots here, but hard to stand out nowadays
Better resolution of the Otter and Puffin shot is available at yahoo news:
That shot is awesome! The look in the poor bird's eye is telling so much.. The end of the line.. and the seal is completely nonchalant, just another snack for him.
Hmmm... I was expecting to see a leaping tiger trying to save a cute panda from a crazed shark.
no real issues with the photos, but the UK don't seem to have much wildlife to photograph. sad photo of the puffin.
And that´s maybe the answer to all those expecting "wow photos" like they are used to seing from Masai Mara or Tsavo national parks in Africa. It´s Britain, civilized and long inhabited country where real wilderness does not exist for centuries. Given those conditions the pictures are great.
If you take a look at BPWA website, there are some really good pictures, which are worth "wows". For example mountain hare, frogspawn, knot and some others. On the other hand many pictures are weak, even technically.To be honest, I don't understand how the boring effect of playing with "highlights", "shadows" and "saturation" sliders got the 1st place.
Nonsense. Get to The Highlands of Scotland and you've got wolves, deer, badgers and I think there are even a few wolverines, imported from somewhere. Also lots of migrating birds. The shots posted are clever and technically advanced but for me, having lived in Braemar and frequently visited the North of Scotland, these shots seem a bit tame.
Scots won't be able to enter if they vote YES in ten days time; another good reason to stay in the Union?
Another desperate utterance from Unionists, certainly. But as ever, you're thinking about it backwards. There won't be a Britain anymore, so the whole competition will have to be scrapped. But we will probably allow you to come up and photograph our lovely wildlife. Don't try to borrow a camera though; it might well be in Gaelic!
Maybe there will be a Scottish wildlife photo competition: Best Loch Ness monster picture 2015. ;-) In that case you surely win over this boring British wildlife pics. ;-)
Ted Danson solved that mystery years ago. Google some images of Glencoe, Highland Stags. Orkney etc. We'rel a small, cold fontier country on the northern border of Europe and in terms of wildlife, at the bottom of any table of "interestingness." But if you're lucky and get a week without rain, it can be a lovely place to visit. Like almost everywhere on earth which hasn't been taken over by man.
Just wait until the pubs empty out.
"Yeah that's right....I'm struttin'......."
The winner highlights that fact that there is little truly wild in England. Excepting London, it is one giant farm.
I beg to differ England is full of wildlife, you just have to know where to look. If you go into the middle of a big city there is still wildlife but to get the best photos the British coastline as excellent wildlife. Even where I come from in the middle of Sherwood forest we have loads of wildlife.
What you call a forest is a mere city park in Canada. The Royal Forest Of Dean... don't blink or you will miss it. The New Forest... a bit of wasteland with ponies running around. Even the few large Moors are suspect. Wales and Scotland may claim to wildlife but England? You need wilderness to truly have wildlife.
then u know nothing about wildlife. Size does not make it better as if that was the case then only Africa has wildlife with Elephants, and lions etc.
Clive, I have my tongue in my cheek. I lived in England the past three years. I know what is there and what isn't. Growing up in Canada has skewed my perspective for sure but there is no doubt there is an order of magnitude difference as to what is wild in England and what is wild in many other parts of the world. Cheers.
living in England for the past 3 years makes u the master of British wildlife then I suppose, I moved out of England after living there for20 years and never saw half of the wildlife we have. Also the title was British wildlife so NI, Wales and Scotland (for now) are also part of the competition and they too have special and rare wildlife. Quick example of nice British wildlife is the fastest creature on earth the peregrine falcon. I spent 3 month in Newfoundland and have to say what bit of wildlife I saw was also impressive and different to what I was used to. Here in NL the diversity of wildlife is also impressive and different. So I stick by my original statement England is full of wildlife. Seems to me you enjoy trolling more than you enjoy hunting for wildlife.
Indeed, we had a fox living in our backyard along with the hedgehogs and wood pigeons. Mind none of them were particularly wild.
Saffron, you know a "forest" in Britain doesn't necessarily include trees? Historically, it was simply the word for an area set aside for noblemen to hunt in, and thus was often mostly treeless (save for a few stands to give some cover for the game) to allow the horses free movement.
But I agree, there's not much left of them these days... :-(
Why do I like the runners up rather than the first couple of "winners"?
Subjective preference. Keep in mind that jurors can never truly remove this from the equation - and I don't really think they should. I've jurored a few exhibitions and this is something to always be conscious of: striving for some balance of subjective factors and more objective evaluation. Easier said than done, however.
London has many domesticated versions of wild birds all over the parks
Wide angle duck FTW. Not sure how they took the picture though, need to be very close to the bird.
Exactly, the picture does not impress at first, but the longer you look at it, the more details you find. First it is a wild goose so it is interesting the photographer with WA lens got that close. Than there is this nice contrast of a wild animal walking through centre of one of the biggest cities in Europe. On the other hand the picture is free of people, boats etc. so kinda resembles deserted wilderness. And also there may be a hidden idea of London being a wild and savage place to live in. The muted colours nicely represent British weather, also thegrey goose matches nicely the grey cityscape. The technical perfection (composition, exposition, sharpness) is self-evident.So not a picture that impresses at a first glance, but there is a lot in it and it deserves to be among the winners.
the duck seems to be proud of himself
Ah no it doesn't. It's a flash blasted bird by the water on a grey day. And this kind of goose is not hard to get near if it's use to people. There are a couple of these Greytag geese at the local bird sanctuary that are kept in the farmyard section and wander around with sheep and goats. They won't move until you get within about 20cm of them and they can be aggressive especially towards children and smaller animals if bothered.
If this picture was posted as for C&C on the forums it would be lambasted. But post it as a winner in a photo competition and people fall over themselves to tell you how much there is to the wonderful shot. The subjective nature of photo competitions are why I never wasted much time on them. Winning pictures more often than not tell me more about the social dynamics and psychology of the judges than the true value of the image.
"The subjective nature of photo competitions are why I never wasted much time on them." Translated: I never won so I gave up entering photo competitions (?) ;-)
In London you may take a portrait of a "wild" goose easier than a portrait of a hen in a village.
@ludex. Check my history. I've only ever entered a handful which you can hardly call trying... You don't have to enter to disagree with who won. I found I was doing that a lot. So what should I be doing here? Taking photos in my spare time to the tastes of others? I don't think so. Doing that takes you away from shooting so that YOU as the photographer are happy with the shot. I have seen a lot of prize winning work that didn't move me, and some stunning photos that never won a prize. No intention of playing these games.
Yep, Flickr has many of these
I like that one!
Puffin's are Always popular, but this one doesn't enjoy it's price I guess.
#1 is excellent.
I think those are pretty cool. More interesting and different than common shots of birds landing, tigers or grizzly bears.
I know it's art but there was a time when people would have been put off by a phone booth shaped like a balloon or at least found it distracting. Now, its just another problem that shouldn't be there in the first place but can be fixed after the fact.
I agree with the general sentiment in these comments that these shots are a bit underwhelming. I entered this competition and had one photo shortlisted, but had to withdraw as the same shot was also shortlisted for WPOTY. Oh well.
I cannot believe that these were the best images they received - there are lots of great wildlife photographers in the UK. I wonder how the judging was done?
I dont see why the shark image is so extraordinary. Dont get me wrong, I love all of these, but if I had an underwater housing for my DSLR (D3), I could get a very similar result. The shark is the most exotic thing about the image honestly.
A dead telephone box? Wildlife? This is Monty Python, right?
Shockingly mediocre selection.
Are you always the same guy, under different alias, commenting on every photo contest I ever lay my eyes on, claiming how bad the entries are and then not having a single photo to show for when we click on the handle...?
...or is it a company, a club or some other social entity doing the tired bit...?
Shockingly dull comment from skytripper.
If I'm honest nothing really grabs me apart from the Shark and claw images. The winning image is pretty dull and boring (to me at least). I've seen far better wildlife images on Flickr and 500px.
Like the mozzie! The ones I usually look at are in the red puddle, this is refreshing...
http://afisha.ngs.ru/news/more/1914401/some photos from WILD NATURE OF RUSSIA 2013
Cleaning his rifle.Deciding where to go hunting next Siberia, Ukraine, Syria or US
Can you translate the caption for the fifth shot down please?
I mean this photos are more positive than British.
It's common heron's pullus who fell into swamp in time of hurricane.
Syria and Ukraine are good for CIA's hunting.
Yes, the main problem in those countries is the CIA......Tell me, after the washing, does the brain FEEL clean?
What about you? We discuss photos. You comments are inappropriate.
You are right. I apologize.
Yes they are, but the fifth shot had me puzzled of exactly what it is. It looks like a heron in camouflage!I suspect it's one that's just come back to the branch after diving into a vegetation thick river.
Yes. Very interesing photo. :) It seems to me this photos are made with love, with soul. British photos are photos and it's all. So less emotions. :) It doesn't mean that it's bad....But I prefer more emotional photos of birds and animals.
Most of these pictures could have been taken in the UK as well. And in fact, if you look at BWPA's website, you will find many better pictures than the winning ones.
I expect to be wowed but then i was like.... hmmm, ok. Your pictures are pretty good, good jobs. Keep it up. That's how i casually praise a fellow photographer
Most are ordinary but for the shark image.
it's.. ok, but I've seen better shots @ flickr.
Ruth Asher's shot is great - lovely colours and textures - my favourite.#5 is a worthy entry.The rest don't really impress me much.
art is art, like the beauty, in the eye of a beholder...
Image 1.This duck does the walkThis duck does the talk.This duck does push the puck.This duck doesn't give a ....****************This is the very first duck I know who really has an attitude.
It's a goose.
@Framer -- where do you think it gets the attitude?
What the Goose...?
Duck. Duck. Goose!
Lovely to see.
Some good, and some great images. Personally I think the B&W blue shark is stunning, and the gnat deservedly chosen for a fresh take on such a subject, and the gannets shot is simply beautiful and well executed. I personally find the no. 1 and 2 shots quite well executed but not that interesting. No. 4 is an interesting subject but a bit lacking in interest and technical execution.
But that's the beauty of photography - beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
They may be good but certainly nothing GREATTom G
Subjective as I say; for me the shark image from above IS great. Pure nature as art.
Agree, the B&W shark is a keeper, and the mosquito or gnat is as well. The others,.... Not so much.
Really like the overall winner, then I'm a Londoner.
I have never been to London by now (plan to go there next spring), but in my opinion the goose shot perfectly represents London weathe and "urban wildlife". If it was a photo with deep blue coloured sky I would probably not believe it is from London. :-)
British humor? I do not get it.
IMHO 5,6 & 7 are much better than the goose that won 1st place. But then beauty has always been in the eye of the beholder.
While I agree the shark (No 5) is amazing, the seals fin is kinda ordinary, maybe the least impresive of all. But that´s perfectly OK; de gustibus non est disputandum.
The seal fin is ordinary I suppose in the sense that it didn't require any special technique, timing, or equipment - as long as the seal was there and the right equipment was used it's a very easy shot to take. The interesting thing about it, and no doubt why it is a winner, is that few photographers would choose to focus just on that fin, creating a unique impression of the seal.
Awesome take on what wildlife is, with nice images to boot :)
Excellent photos. As has been noticed below, the colours nicely correspond with British weather ;-) e.g. the goose picture. My favourites are the goose (No 1, perfect composition, matching colours and mood, good title), the otter (3, thatś real wildlife, good timing), b&w shark (5, like a PC animation, fascinating) and the gnat (absolutely minimalistic, almost surreal). Deserved winners I think.
P.S. This is what photographing is about: taking perfect pictures, not having perfect cameras. We sometimes tend to forget this (me including).
Most of them are great! #1 is my funny!
The nesting gannets shot is superb. I advise also looking at the young photographers' photos on the BWPA website as well, some excellent shots!
mmm.....mainly birds, fish and seals....bit limited in scope. The best picture is the silhouette of the gnat.....my numble opinion.....but tbh...none of them make me go...wow!!
Be careful or the usual DPR suspects will label you a "hater".Expect the following:1. a lecture on art from one of the forum's experts.2. a request from someone along the lines of "why don't you show us one of YOUR shots of a shark!"
I agree with you on the "limited in scope" and non wow factor. To me these are just okay.
I will enjoy the discussion here. I must admit I don't shoot wildlife often. I appreciate seeing exceptional shots of this type. Living near the ocean I have seen many great shots taken by friends of sea life so perhaps I am biased.
I also don´t like these type of argumentation: If you don´t like the food, then you cook something better! However on photography webpage I guess every user is a photographer and when he is critisizing some pictures, he can expect a question What is better? What makes you say wow? It does not have to be own photography, but I would like to see a dramatically better picture of british wildlife that in your/nicks opinion deserves victory in abovementioned cathegories more than the current winners.
there are not many tigers/lions/elephants/crocodiles about around here. The art is to make the most of what is available.
Ludex, I'm biased....i took this photo.... sure its not technically great, yes flash was used (it was pitch black as it was taken at night) the subject isnt nice and fluffy, but the slug has a comical expression and is doing something not many people woud care to try to observe close up. Do I think its worthy of winning a comp like we are discussing?...probably not....but hey its all subjective but I personally consider it a damned sight more interesting as a record of wildlife than several of the other pictures in the competition gallery http://nickjdavis.zenfolio.com/p348300191/h1a009987#h1a009987
Nice photo too, indeed the snail has a funny expression in his face. But technically it is mediocre as you realize, composition is not ideal, the surrounding is distracting. The content (idea) is fine, the form isn´t. If this should be in the macro category, compare it to the winning gnat picture: it it almost art, nothing distracting, pure minimalism, just the gnat, black and white. Content and form, both are perfect.
Ahh, now that brings up the interesting discussion as to whetehr you prefer wildlife photography as an artform (and I agree with your comments about the gnat which is why i liked it the best of all the images) or whether you prefer it as a means of documentary. There is of course no reason why it cant be both at the same time but i'm probably in the latter camp, .i'd rather capture a technically less than perfect image of a rare wild animal (not that the slug is rare!!) thats taken me weeks to track down than I would take an artistically beautiful image of something a little more common. Take your comment about the distracting background of my image....short of picking the slug up and moving it elsewhere there was nothing i coud do about the background - I recorded the image as it was laid out in front of me (not that I coudl see much as it was pitch black)...I'm not a fan of wildlife photography where the subject/environment has been manipulated to aid artistic creativity.
I understand your standpoint. I know it is difficult to take a good picture of a wild animal, mostly they are shy and it takes some effort to get close enough to make usable photo, you cannot influence the environment. To be honest I haven´t taken a single decent wildlife photo that I would dare to show and having given up I sold my telezoom. Therefore I consider perfect animal shots where also the surrounding is perfect (either almost nonexistent like the b&w shark shot no. 5 or giving special mood to the shot like No 6) an art.
Majority of the series is devoid of any color, just like the British weather !
Look like someone cranked up creativity from the judging criteria. I'm positively surprised by the result.
Not my idea of wildlife.
What were you expecting, lions and tigers?
That's what i find so nice about them, shifting our preconception of wildlive in a pretty pretty way.
The judges are obviously TV watchers and look at the world as if they are watchng TV.
I have no doubt that the beauty of British landscapes and the wildlife residing there far exceed the dullness of these images.
I'm not a wildlife photography expert but these are some really stunning fresh-look photos!
Some serious chops there...