Monday, 1 August 2011

Ryan's Garden Photography Competition: The Results

A Stunning Entry by Alex Jobber
Back in June I launched the first ever Ryan’s Garden Photography Competition and I was really surprised with the response it prompted.  Images poured in and the standard was excellent. Images ranged from pristine single blooms to rock star gardeners and we even had an anatomically correct daikon!  I was over the moon when Charles Hawes agreed to judge the competition and after some professional deliberation the verdict was in.  Here’s what Charles had to say on his favourites and the standard of entries:

'It was very interesting to see the selection of around 50 pictures entered in this competition.  As with most garden photography competitions, most entries opted to go in close, looking at plants and bugs up front and personal, rather than the broader views. I think this reflects just how difficult it is to make garden views have real impact and why professional garden photographers get up at the crack of dawn to use the special light, which is sometimes there at that time of day to help their pictures have impact.

Stephany Ungless's idea of a garden made of paper was a fun idea, though, and it was nice to see Melissa Cannon's shot of people enjoying the garden- the only one with people in, as it happens. So the strong contenders were the close ups and there were several really great pics.

Lee Telfer's composition with sweet peas was lovely but it just needed to be a little more in focus for my taste.  Kate Howlett achieved something similar with her beautiful pic of spring blossom. I loved the humour of Mark Willis's daikon and I admired the capture of the honeybee in flight by Neil Hedge (although the light levels could have been lifted a little).

But there were two outstanding photographs in my view that were in a class of their own. Alex Jobber's composition of a single hellebore flower was stunning. I loved the background colour and the way that it fades subtly towards the bottom of the pic. Setting the plant off-centre was a great idea. This would have won were it not for Stewart Johnson's amazing spider web photograph.  This is a beautiful, mesmerising picture. He is showing us true creativity here and is using photography to take something in the natural world as his source and gives us back a work of art. A worthy winner'.
The Winning Entry by Stewart Johnson (Click to enlarge)
So there we have it, the winner of the Ryan’s Garden Photography Competition is Stewart Johnson who wins £100 of vouchers from The Range.  In addition to this, Dee Edmonds wins the People’s Choice with the highest number of viewer comments at the time of competition close.  Congratulations to you both and I'll be in contact shortly.  A big thank you to everyone else who entered and don't forget to visit shortly for the next of my competitions which has a prize worth £99.99.  All competition entries will remain on view on the Ryan's Garden Facebook page so please feel free to pop on over, add your comments and 'Like' the page.

If you would like to see more of Charles’ work Don't miss 'Discovering Welsh Gardens' and 'The Bad Tempered Gardener' .


  1. Great winning shot - that spider's web one has inspired me to go out with my 50mm f1.4 and try something similar. Love it processed in bnw......... it's bokeh delicious and well deserved as the winner.


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