Lundy Spash-In 2015 Winners
The 2015 winners of the annual underwater photography Splash-In competition have been announced
The tiny island of Lundy - just three miles long by a mile and a half wide - located off the North Devon coastline in the Bristol Channel welcomed divers from around the UK for its annual underwater photography Splash-In competition over the weekend of 1st - 2nd August.
Having been rescheduled fro its original date due to poor weather conditions the competition attracted a good number of divers as entrants chose from four different categories: Mega to Macro; Marine Abstract; Simply Marine and Spirit of the Marine protected Area - before presenting their chosen images to the judging team.
Taking top spot in the Marine Abstract category and also chosen as Overall Winner by judges for his shot of an anemone entitled 'Jester's Hat,' Jonathan Aird spent three dives and a total of three and a half hours underwater searching for the right subject.
'Some of the other divers were struggling with the visibility for shooting the big stuff as there was a lot of detritus in the water so I decided to look for macro subjects,' explained Mr. Aird who captured his winning image using a Nikon D5100 with an 18-70mm lens in an Ikelite housing.
'I was looking specifically for nudibranchs around the legs of the pier but not having any luck I came across these beautiful anemones and after taking a couple of regular shots looked for something more abstract.'
Renowned for its diverse marine life, Lundy is famous for its resident grey seals, pink sea fans and is the only area in the UK where five species of rare cup corals exist together.
Competitors must make a twenty-two mile boat trip from the mainland to reach the granite outcrop, whose population stands at a mere thirty people, before descending beneath the protected waters of England's first Marine Conservation Zone, with the weather always a factor.
'Conditions were difficult as the visibility was less than usual for this time of the year due to the unusually windy weather we've all been experiencing,' said Beccy MacDonald, Lundy Warden and organiser of the competition. 'But the images once again show how amazing and spectacular the marine life and scenery is here at Lundy and we thank everyone for their support.'
Maggs Ashton's colourful 'Yellow Power' bagged first place in the Spirit of the Marine Protected Area category while Mike Deaton's brace of grey seal images finished in top spot in both Mega to Macro and Simply Marine categories.
'Jesters hat' by Jonny Aird – Suunto eon Steel computer from Suunto
Mega to Macro
1st prize - 'Seal' by Mike Deaton - Nexus Dive computer from AP Diving
2nd prize - 'Anemone' by Mark Lavington - Day trip to Lundy - The Lundy Company/The Landmark Trust
3rd prize - 'Glass shrimp' by Jonny Aird - Ikelite Pca lite torch from Cameras underwater
1st prize - 'Jesters hat' by Jonny Aird - Olympus tough camera from Olympus
2nd prize - 'Anemone' by Mike Deaton - Hollis mask and cap from Oceanic
3rd prize - 'Anemone' by Andrea Bentote - Ikelite Pca lite torch from Cameras underwater
Simply Marine - no alterations to images allowed
1st prize - 'Seal at Brazen Ward' by Mike Deaton - Aqualite-S 90 from Sea & Sea
2nd prize - 'Red eyes' by Mark Lavington - Oceanic Cyanea & Lavacore booties from Oceanic
3rd prize - 'Mexican wave' by Maggs Ashton - Subscription to DIVER magazine
Spirit of the marine protected area
1st prize - 'Yellow Power' by Maggs Ashton - Xenos wetsuit from Fourth Element
2nd prize - 'Pink sea fan' by Mike Deaton - Travel lite bag from Beaver Sports
3rd prize - 'New life' by Owen Atkinson - Ikelite Pca lite torch from Cameras Underwater