JUST like previous years, the East Berwickshire coast was a hotbed of photographic activity over August bank holiday weekend as a large number of snappers took to the water for St Abbs and Eyemouth Voluntary Marine Reserve’s annual Splash In.
This year’s Splash In was the 25th year the competition has been held by Reserve so along with the usual categories of macro (close up of the Reserve’s inhabitants) and wide angle (underwater scenic shots) competitors could enter for the special Themed Category, ‘25th Anniversary’ in which digital manipulation of their photographs was allowed.
Also new to this year’s competition was the introduction of judges for two of the categories as opposed to the audience voting on the winning images as in previous years.
Voluntary Marine Reserve Chairman Lawson Wood, regular St Abbs diver Jim Greenfield and Paul Duxfield of Ocean Leisure Cameras picked the winners in the Macro and Wide Angle Categories and the audience voted for the winners in the Themed Category.
Fish were this year’s star of the show appearing in seven of the 11 winning photos. Jason Gregory’s close up of a leopard-spotted goby clinched first prize in the Macro category, as well as being voted the Best Image in Show by the audience. Brian Jubb captured a superb shot of two ballan wrasse over a reef which won him first place in the Wide Angle category. Paul Bury’s clever digital manipulation won him first in the Themed Category with his photo ‘Subsea Party’.
The competition wasn’t just for professional underwater photographers, there were prizes for the Best Beginner in the Macro and Wide Angle categories. Craig Hargate won Best Beginner in the Macro category with his photo of a pogge and Mark Davies won Best Beginner in the Wide Angle category with his ballan wrasse.