UPY 2016 British Waters Macro - Winner

Dan Bolt

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UPY 2016 British Waters Macro - Winner
'Catshark Supernova' - Dan Bolt

Just off a headland in this beautiful bay is a reef system favoured as a laying ground for the eggs, or 'mermaids purse' of the smallspotted catshark (Scyliorhinus canicula). The day I chose to visit the reef for a snorkel I came across many egg cases wrapped tightly into the weed. Positioning my strobe carefully took some time but the resulting image, with the low-visibility providing a celestial-like quality, shows the hidden beauty within this system of reproduction.

Judge's comment: Martin Edge: This particular image grew on me over the judging days, and with the last category to resolve it got better and better. Day one, it was all about the silhouette of the Cat shark within the egg case. By day 2 it was the balanced shape and ethereal light of the silhouette. A master-stroke to shape the backlighting with a snooted strobe in the form of wings. Outstanding simplicity.

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