Opinion | Your Say

Capturing Nature's glory

The winners made a big impression with their angles and compositions

  • By Mohammad Jihad, Community Web Editor
  • Published: 00:00 December 24, 2011
  • Gulf News

  • Image Credit: Supplied
  • (1)Phillip van der Merwe, (2)Niaz Basheer and (3)Vencer Montes

Deserts, rainforests, rocky mountains and snow fields — Earth is a treat for the eyes.
For the month of November, Gulf News Picture Editor Devadasan K.P. decided to give credit to those who appreciate natural beauty and have captured it in all its glory.
He said: “We have received many photos this month and I realised that our subjects are different from our usual submissions.”

The focus has changed as our readers are exploring new horizons.
He said: “I was hoping to see something different and the readers were one step ahead. I noticed that many of the photographs were of landscapes and it showed the beauty that this world has.”
The angles and how the photographs were taken also played a major role in the pictures’ end result.

Devadasan said: “I have seen different angles of how these pictures were taken and it adds value to the photo. It also tells you how the
photographer sees the subject.”

Our readers also found various techniques to make their pictures unique.
He said: “They used different textures, patterns, and forms to enhance the quality of their photographs and tell a story through it.”

Phillip van der Merwe
Picture published: November 23

Profile: Originally a geologist by training, Phillip van der Merwe is involved in gold mining and exploration projects all over the world.
Van der Merwe was born in South Africa and has spent most of his life travelling.
He said: “After many countries and even more moves, my family and I came to the UAE seven years ago.”
His father was a keen photographer and it seems to have rubbed off on him.
He said: “I always have at least one camera with me. I take photos of anything that catches my eye.”
A few subjects he is interested in are landscapes, street photography, and all things abandoned.
Van der Merwe is currently working on a project photographing abandoned houses and villages in the mountains around Ras Al Khaimah. When asked about his age, he quipped: “My age? 52 — old enough to know better, too old to care.”

Reason for winning:
Picture Editor Devadasan K.P. said: “This picture won because it shows the reader’s view on Nature and the environment. He has provided nice details of the mud cracks and it was shot well.”

Niaz Basheer
Picture published: November 4

Profile: The love for Nature is what brought about Niaz Basheer’s passion for photography.
Basheer, an Indian national living in Dubai, has been taking photographs since he was in high school but only took it seriously when he started taking photography classes four years ago. He said: “I love to travel and see all landscapes that the world has to offer.”
Basheer also observes the varied expressions of people around him and captures it at the right moment. He said: “Every single individual has a priceless, unique and beautiful expression.”
The 22-year-old auditor takes a lot of photographs during the night — it provides him a sense of depth in colours.
Basheer and a few photographers formed a group called Aperture that conducts workshops to teach beginners how to take pictures. He said: “It is great to help others who are passionate about photography.”

Reason for winning:
Picture Editor Devadasan K. P. said: “This is a great shot — it has a nice angle that shows the road in the middle of the desert

Vencer Montes
Picture published: November 17

Profile: Vencer Montes was always fascinated by photography due to its power to capture a memory.
Montes said: “It has been said that precious moments are considered to be one of our most valued treasures. That is what made me love photography.”
The 29-year-old dental assistant’s favourite style is street photography.
He said: “I love capturing a decisive moment and freezing life in a frame as naturally as possible — no lies and no pretending.”
Montes grew up in the Philippines and has been residing in Dubai for the past four years.

Reason for winning:
Picture Editor Devadasan K. P. said: “I chose this because the picture shows the energy and force used by the workers to push the camel.”

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