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BSoUP's Splash-in Competition 1988

by Brian Pitkin

Reproduced from in focus 29 (September 1988) The idea of BSoUP's Splash-In is to bring together as many members and other underwater photographers as possible for a weekend of fun where they can compete, converse and collaborate in a relaxed informal atmosphere. In addition to black and white and colour print categories, the competition features an 'On the Day' category, where participants are issued with a roll of 35 mm film in the morning which they must expose in Plymouth waters before tea. The exposed films are processed during tea and returned with two slide mounts per film to their respective underwater photographers. During the evening the two selected slides per participant are projected and the audience present invited to vote for their favourite three in order of preference. The slides may be either contrived, novelty, humourous type shots or standard creative shots of marine life, scenery, divers etc.

BSoUP 21st Anniversary cake by Les Kemp. The original colour slide was the winner in the Contrived / Humorous category and won the Aquamatic Trophy and Gold Medal.

Being the Society's 21st Anniversary, this year's Splash-In was planned to be extra special and in the event that is just what it turned out to be. Several members have stated that it was the most well organised Splash-In they had ever attended.

The event was staged on Saturday 4th June at the usual venue, Fort Bovisand in Plymouth. For the third year running the Splash-in was sponsored by AGFA, who generously supplied all the film and processing chemicals.

For the first time ever a programme was printed and circulated prior to the event and this undoubtedly helped the day run as smoothly as it did, although it was a considerable commitment as nobody_had any idea in advance how many participants would take part and consequently how many rolls of film would require processing..

First thing in the morning, sixty-five eager competitors jostled good naturedly in the reception area at the Fort for their rolls of Agfachrome 50 ASA or 200 ASA film, Once in their hands the film was spirited away to be loaded furtively into a camera ready for the first dive of the day.

The 96 submitted black and white and colour prints were put on display in the reception area, and a dazzling sight they made. Volunteers manned the stand throughout the day and everyone viewing the prints was encouraged to vote for their favourites.

Flat worm by Peter Rowlands, the winning slide 'On the Day'

Jellyfish, by Kevin Cullimore, which came third in the Black and White Prints category

As I prepared my film the sea conditions were less than ideal and the sun peered infrequently through the clouds. Nevertheless I had decided that Shag Rock was where I wanted to be and set off with three companions to dive. When we reached the Rock the swell was up to three metres, no chance of a decent picture. So we headed round the Mewstone, seeking shelter in its lee. And as luck would have it, conditions were very good. The Mewstone had taken the bite out the sea and amazingly the visibility inshore was quite exceptional. We anchored in 10 metres, the bottom clearly visible below us, Last minute check on equipment and over the side. Great! The gullies were alive with marine 11fe and although there was a slight occasional swell things couldn't have been much better. An hour and half later I was back at the Fort with, I hoped (in common with all the other competitors), some winning shots.

By 4.30 p.m. the processing chemicals had been brought up to temperature and the dark room team had already started loading spirals. A task that was to take quite a time with 62 films returned for processing. But by 6,30 p.m, all the films had been processed and were hanging up to dry, prior to sleeving.

A cold buffet had been arranged for the evening and thanks to Rhoda Gill and her helpers a splendid meal was enjoyed by 120 members and their guests. Particularly memorable were the delicious sweets and a magnificent anniversary cake, ceremonially cut by founder members Peter Scoones and Colin Doeg.

Divers in cave entrance by David George, which tied for first place in the Black and White Prints category.

Underwater photographer viewed through a section of pipe by Warren Williams, which tied for first place in the Black and White Prints category.

After everyone had eaten, the processed films were returned to their expectant owners to be squinted at through lenses, peered at in viewers or projected in the privacy of someone's room, in order to select the best two for submission. Simultaneously volunteers began counting the votes for the prints in preparation for the awards ceremony. Finally, at the appointed time, projection began. The Splash-In slide show was on, and over 140 people crowded into the room to enjoy it and vote for the best slides. Within half an hour of the end of the slide-show all votes had been counted and the presentations began.

Mr Brian Greaves of Agfa presented the trophies, medals and prizes to the winners. There was a tie for first place in the Black and White Prints class between DAVID GEORGE with his print of divers outside a cave and WARREN WILLIAMS with his print of a diver seen through a large diameter pipe. Both won Gold Medals and five rolls of Agfachrome film. They will have to share the Ocean Optics Trophy, six months each. Third place went to KEVIN CULLIMORE for his print of a Jellyfish. Kevin was awarded a Bronze Medal and two rolls of film.

The winner of the Colour Prints class was LINDA PITKIN for her print of a sea-fan, Linda was awarded the Greenaway Marine Trophy, a Gold Medal and six rolls of Agfachrome, Second place went to Mike Glover for his print of a Conger Eel. Mike received a Silver Medal and four rolls of film. Third place went to DAVID GEORGE, who won a Bronze Medal and two rolls of film for his print of sweepers shoaling, over the steps of a wreck in the Red Sea.

The Best Contrived/Novelty/Humorous shot 'On the Day' was taken by LES KEMP and it was a particularly appropriate and well executed contrived shot showing a diver holding a BSoUP 21st anniversary cake on a mirror, candles alight and reflected in the diver's mask. Sparkle was added to the image by using a starburst filter to great effect, particularly on the candles and mirror. Les won the Aquamatic Trophy, a Gold Medal and six rolls of film.

The winner 'On the Day' was PETER ROWLANDS, who won the BSoUP Trophy, a Gold Medal and six rolls of Agfachrome for his double exposure of a flat worm with just a twinkle of sunlight overhead, Second place went to LINDA PITKIN, who won a Silver Medal and four rolls of film for her balanced light shot of kelp against the sunlit surface where a boat lying peacefully at anchor is silhouetted. Third place went to RON WILLIAMSON, who won a Bronze Medal and two rolls of film for his picture of an anemone.

Conger eel, by Mike Glover, which came second in the Colour Prints category.

Sweepers on wreck, by David George, which took third place in the Colour Prints category.

To celebrate the 21st Anniversary of the Society, Greenaway Marine staged a lively and colourful grand fireworks display at the end of the harbour wall. The finale was a goodwill message which read "Greenaway Marine wishes BSoUP a Happy 21st". If you were there and photographed it, a E25 prize is being offered by Greenaway Marine for the best picture. Closing date is 30th June, 1988. Send your entries to Greenaway Marine, Post Office Lane, Broad Hinton, Wilts.

It is a pleasure to record here the Society's thanks to Peter Rowlands, Peter Scoones, Paul Clark and Viv Pearson for processing all of the film; to David George for transport and projection; to Jenny George, Jan Lenart, Liz Wood, Debbie Perrin and Paul Clark for counting votes; Jan and Mike Maloney, Alice and Helen Wood, Roma Glover, Linda Reid, Alison Terry, Sylvie Edge, Jenny and Keith Compton-Bishop and many others who helped out during the day; and to Steve Greenaway and his sons for the amazing pyrotechnics. Our thanks also to Alan Bax and Jim Gill and all the staff at the Fort for the use of facilities; to Rhoda Gill for organising the very enjoyable buffet; and last but by no means least to Brian Greaves and AGFA for their generosity and continued support.

BSoUP's Splash-in Competition Winners

Digital (overall and category winners)

2014 Overall Winner - Cathy Lewis Mankind in the Sea - Terry Griffiths Marine Life - Cathy Lewis
  Best Compact - Colin Whyte    
2013 Overall Winner - Dan Bolt Mankind in the Sea - Dan Bolt Marine Life - Alex Tatttersall
  Best Compact - Paula Bailey Reflections - Dan Bolt  
2012 Overall Winner - Tim Priest Mankind in the Sea - Charles Erb  
  Best Compact - Paula Bailey Crustacea - Rob White  
2011 Overall Winner - Dan Bolt Mankind in the Sea - Derek Haslam Abstract - Rob Cuss
    Marine Life - Dan Bolt  
  Best Compact - Colin Yule Compact - Mankind in the Sea - Martin Rishton Compact - Abstract - Mark Brooke
2010 Overall Winner - Charles Erb Close-up - Julie Kaye Animal Portraits - Cathy Lewis
    Wide-angle - Martin Davies  
2009   Close-up - Rick Ayrton Animal Portraits - Jim Garland
    Wide-angle - Neil Skilling  
2008   Close-up - Cathy Lewis Animal Portraits - Helen Wehner
    Wide-angle - Charles Erb  
2007   Wide-angle - Arthur Kingdon Fish - Alan James
    Close-up - Alan James  

Film & Digital (overall & category winners)

2006 Overall Winner - Dave Peake Film Wide-angle - Martin Davies Film Close-up - Jan Maloney
    Digital Wide-angle - Trevor Rees Digital Close-up - Alan James
2005   Film Wide-angle - Martin Davies Film Close-up - Jean Manson
    Digital Wide-angle - Charles Erb Digital Close-up - Charles Erb

Film (category winners)

2004 Macro - Cathy Lewis Wide-angle - Dave Peake Fish - Peter Ladell
2003 Macro - David Stevens Wide-angle - Dave Peake Fish - Peter Hewitt
2002 Macro - Ken Sullivan Wide-angle - Len Deeley Fish - Bill Hewitt
2001 Macro - Tom Cowan Wide-angle - Guy Middleton  

Film (overall winners, no categories)
  2000 Ken Sullivan 1991 Kevin Cullimore 1982 Peter Salmon
  1999 Derek Haslam 1990 Kevin Cullimore 1981 Warren Williams
  1998 Pat Morrisey 1989 Paul Clark 1980 David McBride
  1997 Peter Tatton 1988 Peter Rowlands 1979 Warren Williams
  1996 Linda Pitkin 1987 Warren Williams 1978 Dave Nance
  1995 Dave Nardini 1986 Peter Scoones 1977 Geoff Harwood
  1994 Dave Peake 1985 Kevin Cullimore 1976
  1993 Brian Pitkin 1984 Les Kemp 1975
  1992 John Souness 1983 Peter Hewitt 1974 Warren Williams

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