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Embrace the chaos, find candid moments

Reader photographers are selected for their best photographs published in March, 2018=

  • Shadi Al Refai captured this image via a drone, at Liwa Desert in Abu Dhabi.Image Credit: Shadi Al Refai
  • Niyaz Ahmad visited Nandgaon and Barsana in India, in the beginning of March, to capture the festival of colouImage Credit: Niyaz Ahmad
  • Sudeesh Kumar’s winning picture is part of his picture essay from Varanasi, on the banks of the Ganges in IndiImage Credit: Sudeesh Kumar
Gulf News

Dubai: A burst of colour, cheerful crowds and a variety of subjects – the best place to find this jackpot is at festivals.

In the UAE, there’s no dearth of such events – whether it’s cosplayers coming together at Comic Con, or music lovers singing along at a K-Pop concert, photographers have ample opportunity to capture a series of interesting, candid moments.

Judy Salcedo, a US-based photographer, shared her views through a blog post: “A great plus to photographing in a large crowd, is that no one really pays any attention to you and your camera. Don’t be afraid to ask someone for their permission to take their photograph. People are usually having fun, and more than happy to pose for you.”

But in such events, crowds bring their own challenges – constant movement can end up creating blurry visuals and photographers have to be quick on their feet to ensure they get the best shot.

A report by UK-based newspaper The Guardian shared a tip for photographers at crowded events: “At seated events, getting close to the action can be difficult and a telephoto or long zoom lens is essential. If you’re stuck in one place or the participants are moving around a stage, wait for the action to come to you.”

With the arrival of spring, the month of March saw a number of events and festivals in and outside the UAE, and sure enough, our reader photographers were there to catch the action.

We asked Gulf News’ Instagram followers to pick their favourite reader photograph of the month. They selected the picture they liked best, by responding to a poll on Instagram Stories. Here, we present the winners.

Editor’s note: Do you want to participate in our monthly Reader Picture Competition? Send us your best photographs, with captions, at readers@gulfnews.com.

FIRST PLACE

Shadi Al Refai is a human resources manager, based in Dubai.

RDS_180414 YT Picture FIRST Winner Shadi Al RefaiHe is an avid photography enthusiast and uses the instagram handle @shadi_alrefai. He captured this image via a drone, at Liwa Desert in Abu Dhabi, and said: ‘The camera was pointing straight down. The camels in the photograph are not actually camels at all, rather they’re the shadows of the camels. The small smudges at the bottom of the camels’ shadows are the actual animals. It makes them harder to see.’

Al Refai’s picture received 1,380 votes in our poll on Instagram, landing him in first place.

SECOND PLACE

Niyaz Ahmad works as a logistics manager for a multinational company in Dubai.

RDS_180414 YT Picture SECOND Niyaz AhmadHe loves travel photography and visited Nandgaon and Barsana in India, in the beginning of March, to capture the festival of colours – Holi – as a picture essay. He said: ‘Holi is a really relaxed festival that’s great fun to participate in, if you don’t mind getting wet and dirty. You’ll end up saturated in water, with colour all over your skin and clothes. The colour, noise and entertainment that accompanies the celebration of Holi bears witness to a feeling of oneness and sense of brotherhood. The festival brings home the lesson of spiritual and social harmony!’

His winning picture received 1,215 votes in our poll on Instagram.

THIRD PLACE

Sudeesh Kumar is a member of Shutter Bugs Creative Forum, an amateur photography group, based in Dubai. He uses the instagram handle @dphotography_planet to post pictures.

Kumar’s winning picture is part of his picture essay from Varanasi, on the banks of the Ganges in India. He said: ‘Varanasi is ideal for photographers. It was a sight to behold, with the pooja (prayer) being performed daily in the evening by a group of priests at the Dashashwamedh Ghat, which is the main ghat in Varanasi.”

His picture received 1,133 votes in our poll on Instagram.

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