At the OGA AGM in Liverpool, 13 January, 2024, the winners of the 2023 competition were announced. East Coast Gaffers were awarded several of the prizes amongst an excellent collection of high quality entries. Thanks go to Sandy Miller for judging the competition and providing citations for the winning photographs. Competition entries are divided into two categories: ‘Life at Sea’ and ‘Sailing Gaffers’.
Life at Sea
After a Lively Night: taken in Lyme Bay during RBC60 by Justin Greig: East Coast
This is a lovely soft image that is very well seen. The sky is a delight and interacts perfectly with the curve of the coach house. The wood adds atmosphere too. An image to be very proud of.
Peace: Loch Eriboll aka Loch ‘Orrible. Nature allows a brief window by Simon Harding: East Coast
The light on the boat is beautiful and brings out her stunning lines. She stands out in the wonderful scenery and there is a postcard feel to this picture that will serve as an excellent memory. It must have been a lovely moment.
We’ve made it! ‘Molly Cobbler’ back in salt water, with Tower Bridge ahead by Mary Gibbs: Bristol Channel
There is something very satisfying about the excellent composition combined with the rather monotone atmosphere of this image. There may be a sense of triumph on reaching this iconic landmark suggested in the title but the image is understated and very successful. A keeper and an image that I am sure would print beautifully.
Deluge: the heavy rain did not dampen the spirits of the parade! by Charles Erb: Solent
This is a great picture. I too was trying to take pictures at the time and I know how difficult it was. This captures all the dramatic atmosphere of the downpour perfectly. The bridge adds a sense of place and you can feel the squally gust and rain. There is also a sense of action that has been captured very well. Well done indeed.
Fair for tomorrow: looking over at Mull from the anchorage at Puilladobhrain by Alison Cable: Scotland
This is a wow picture for me. It’s never easy taking pictures looking directly into the light. It often results in harsh shadows and blacks but this must have been taken at the perfect moment as the sun went down behind the hills. The misty tones in the hills provide depth and the reflected colours are just gorgeous. That stretch of water in the middle seems to balance the composition and the whole effect is one of unobstructed beauty. Just wonderful.
Green Cliffs: three little gaffers heading east OGA60 June 2023, Scotland by Paul Masters: East Coast
This was one of my favourite compositions of all the entries. The image is divided up uniformly by the vertical lines of the stays, sheets and furled headsail, and the horizontal lines of the canal and treeline. The boats then fit into this grid in exactly the right places. The Scots Pines lining the canal provide the atmosphere and there is a real sense of calm and natural beauty.
Grace & Race: ’Cynthia’, the 1910 Gaff Cutter owned by Peter Lucas by Kim Sturgess: South West
‘Cynthia’ is certainly graceful, and the blue sky and sunshine make for a striking image that smacks of summer. A picture to keep handy in January.
Pre-season Check-up: setting up my Kittiwake ‘Syrinx’ when Gaffers Log arrived by Douglas Bridger, East Coast
I thought this picture was full of interest, humour, colour and detail, which all fit together very well. It’s a very clever ‘mise en scene’ and the taker has managed to bring all these different elements together, which could easily look busy and distracting, into a very harmonious whole. Hats off!
Rainbow Treasure: waiting for the tide on passage to Ipswich for OGA60 by Paul Masters: East Coast
Take some lovely light over the beautiful River Deben, add a rainbow and then put ‘Clytie’ in the foreground and you’ve got everything you need for a real showstopper. I see this picture and I just want to make more trips up to Suffolk!
Stormy Skies: a Winklebrig on the The Lynn of Morvern by Gerard Brown: East Coast
Wow! A perfect little gaffer amidst the grand and wild Scottish scenery. I can’t think of anything better. Beautiful light on the hills behind, a moody sky and enough life in the water to suggest some blustery gusts. The lovely green of ‘Sea Jade’ combines with the hills behind and of course contrasts beautifully with the red ochre sails. It is perfectly captured and a runaway winner for me!