Life After Dark

This competition has now closed.

Winners

1st
Blue Night
Yevhen Samuchenko
2nd
Lonely Soul
Svetlana Volkova
3rd
Smoke
Pierpaolo Iaquinta

Commended

Light is undoubtedly the single most important element when it comes to photography. Hence the fact that most photographers choose to shoot their subjects in daylight. However, the hidden world of low-light photography that comes to life between dusk and dawn offers photographers an exciting opportunity to capture life after dark. This fascinating genre of photography is often overlooked due to the challenges that arise from shooting after the sun has gone down, but when done right, the creative potential of night-time photography is well worth the effort.

Van Gogh once said, “I often think that the night is more alive and more richly coloured than the day.” This can certainly be the case with night-time photography where techniques can be used to make electric shots full of atmosphere, life and colour. Nowhere is this truer than in our towns and cities where colourful lights emanate from vehicles, buildings, streetlights, neon signs and even fireworks. Capturing the urban jungle at night helps to convey the energy, soul and dynamism of street scenes that simply may not be so prominent during the day. The darker, more sinister side of the city also comes out to play giving rise to gritty photos that depict the underbelly of our urban landscape.

However, outside of our towns and cities can be just as interesting after dark as a whole new world erupts, creeping out of the shadows. Nocturnal wildlife awakens and starts to come to life allowing us to capture images that simply aren’t possible during daylight hours. Clear skies also offer amazing shots of stars, nebulae, and galaxies illuminating the night sky. Shooting at night allows us to capture images that the human eye simply cannot detect in low-light conditions. It quite literally helps us to see the world in a whole new light.

With this theme we are looking for images that explore the hidden secrets of Life After Dark.

Competition Judge

Simon Allen MPAGB EFIAP

Simon first took up photography whilst at college, principally with the aim of capturing motor racing action, which was his principal interest at that time. However, after graduating and returning to Dumfries, he joined the local camera club in 1983 and photography became his passion.

He was invited to join the committee of Dumfries Camera Club in 1986 and has remained an active member ever since, having been President of the club on two occasions and Secretary for more years than he cares to remember. He has also spent time on the Executive of the Scottish Photographic Federation.

After encouragement by fellow club members, he entered his first international exhibition in 1986 and received a FIAP ribbon for one of his images. He became an avid entrant to competitions of all types, achieving an AFIAP in 1992 and an EFIAP several years later. Following a submission to the very first PAGB awards adjudication in 1994, he was awarded a DPAGB, with his MPAGB following in 1999.

He enjoys photography of all genres but has probably been most successful with landscape, creative and portrait images. He has also greatly appreciated the opportunity that his hobby has provided him with to meet people with a similar interest, partly through lecturing at clubs and societies throughout the country. Being given the opportunity to appreciate and comment on fellow photographers work has always struck him as a great honour, and something that he has greatly enjoyed being involved in at club, national and international levels for over twenty years.

Long may his passion continue.

Blue Night

Yevhen Samuchenko

First Prize

I particularly love the contrast between the smooth, mirror-like surface of the sea, the sweep of the stars through the heavens and the stark strength of the weathered timber posts leading us deep into the image. Perfect use of a long exposure to enhance the image and generate an almost surreal blue hue. This picture would happily hang on my wall.

Lonely Soul

Svetlana Volkova

Second Prize

You can hear the haunting silence - late at night, a light mist rolling between the deserted buildings and the lone figure, silhouetted, shuffling along the deserted winter streets. An image full of atmosphere and mood; beautifully captured.

Smoke

Pierpaolo Iaquinta

Third Prize

A wonderful use of contrasts in this image. Groups and couples in the background creating a sense of noise and revelry. A single figure in the foreground, alone, quiet, a drift of cigarette smoke, contemplating we know not what. Then the author, contrary to convention, includes a bland stone fa├žade occupying one half of the picture space, but adding strength to the feeling that - there's something of interest in there, but what? A question left tantalisingly unresolved.

Maximum City Mumbai

Ranjana Shah

Commended

Of the many night-time city images submitted, this is the one that captured my imagination the most. It's the strength of the molten intersection of humanity that I find so emotive.

Life After Dark 1

Fernand de Canne

Commended

Police, foreign country (to me), dark diffused tunnel, threat around the corner? Tension. It's like being tucked up in bed late at night with a good thriller. Wonderful.

Scared of the Dark

Aaran Hunt

Commended

Strong angular shapes, hard surfaces and graphic lighting create a wonderful and foreboding setting for a young frightened girl, crouching and alone in the corner. She appears lost in thought. As am I.

Douglas Super DC3 Under the Aurora Borealis

Susan Leonard

Commended

An evocative winter landscape, strengthened by the derelict and abandoned Dakota; the mood wonderfully enhanced by the complimentary colours in the Northern Lights and the twinkling stars. Creates a wonderful feeling of loneliness.