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PICTURES: Tough task for judge as silhouettes theme inspires stunning images from Highland camera club members


By Caroline McMorran

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The first of East Sutherland Camera Club’s competitions for 2022 took place earlier this month with silhouettes as its theme.

It always presents an extra challenge to have a theme for a photographic competition, but members rose to the task with 50 excellent entries, giving judge Mark Janes from Tain a taxing job to decide on the winners.

Alan Butcher, Golspie, came first in the colour category with this image entitled ‘Anna’.
Alan Butcher, Golspie, came first in the colour category with this image entitled ‘Anna’.

Mark gave a full analysis of all the images, which members found both informative and helpful. He offered helpful advice on composition and other techniques including post processing.

In the colour category Alan Butcher, Golspie, came first with "Anna”. Not only is the performer silhouetted by stage lighting but the careful inclusion of some of the audience by way of highlighted profiles creates an ambiance that draws the viewer right in to the event.

Second was Rob Zywietz, Badninish, with “Judy G”, a very atmospheric and moody shot. Third was Zoe Gray, Portmahomack, with “Christmas Sunset Over Tain”, showing statuesque silhouettes against a beautifully graduated winter sunset.

Monochrome photography is not simply about removing colour from an image but more about enhancing and strengthening it by removing distracting colour.

This section did not disappoint in this respect with images that could have worked in colour but where graphic qualities were enhanced and transformed by the use of monochrome.

First was Sheila McKenzie, Bonar Bridge, with her “Coming into Roost”, a stunning backlit flurry of avian action.

The Commando War Memorial at Spean Bridge must be one of the most photographed sites in the Highlands, but Andy Kirby, Dornoch, managed to capture the stark and wild nature of its setting, effectively conveying the emotive context of the memorial.

Andy also came third with another much photographed Highland landmark, Ardvreck Castle on Loch Assynt, but giving it an interpretation that tourists might not be seeking!

Due to the continuing pandemic the club’s planned move back to Brora Community Centre in January has been postponed. For more information about the club, visit www.eastsutherlandcc.org.uk

First in the monochrome section was Sheila McKenzie, Bonar Bridge.
First in the monochrome section was Sheila McKenzie, Bonar Bridge.
Zoe Gray's “Christmas Sunset Over Tain” came third in the colour class.
Zoe Gray's “Christmas Sunset Over Tain” came third in the colour class.
Runner-up in the colour category was Rob Zywietz with this atmospheric and moody shot which he called ”Judy G”.
Runner-up in the colour category was Rob Zywietz with this atmospheric and moody shot which he called ”Judy G”.
An emotive picture of the Commando War Memorial at Spean Bridge won Andy Kirby second place in the monochrome category.
An emotive picture of the Commando War Memorial at Spean Bridge won Andy Kirby second place in the monochrome category.
Andy Kirby, Dornoch came third in the monochrome category with his image of Highland landmark, Ardvreck Castle.
Andy Kirby, Dornoch came third in the monochrome category with his image of Highland landmark, Ardvreck Castle.

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