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BSoUP's Theme Portfolio Competition 2000

Winner - Sue Heaps

 

   
'Giannis D' © Sue Heaps

My Portfolio

by Sue Heaps


Since I first dived the Ghiannis D ten years ago, there have been many changed on this wreck and probably just as many changes in my photographic equipment. The rich encrustation of corals and the quantity of sea life has, sadly, dimished significantly. The ship istelf is becoming more acutely tilted and the mast has completely collapsed. Nevertheless, it is still a splendid Red Sea wreck for photographers., with ample opportunities to take dramatic photographs using the strong outlines, intricate shapes and portholes.

When our distinguished newsletter editor asked me to write an explanation about the slides I was horrified. I thought my task was over and, not being technically minded, there was absolutely no hope that I could remember exactly how I had taken each photograph. My philosophy is take take lots of shots using different settings and hope that one or two of then might suceed. So, instead of trying to give you the full technical details, here are a few of my thoughts when assembling the portfolio.

After finally deciding on Ghiannis D as my theme (decisions are not my strong point), I went through my collection of slides, taken last October, and selected the ones which 'stood out' from the rest. I then rejected any that were not crisp and in focus. I find it helpful to treat all slides as if they are a single picture within a frame. The choice and positioning of vertical and horizontal slides within this frame have to be a balanced configuration.

At this stage I suddenly realised that the portfolio had a rather dulll blue, monochromatic look and lacked interest even though I was reasonably satisfied with each individual slide. So I went back to rummage through earlier slides taken during previous visits to the site to find a bit more colour, contrast, variety and impact.

The next step was to balance the tonal values, light, shape, texture and direction of each slide to make a complete picture. Should I have the mast at the top or bottom? Or should it be in the middle? Should the mast point inwards or outwards? This was the most frustrating stage and, even after hours of contemplation, I still had not finally decided on the ultimate selection of images.

Time disappeared as I arranged and re-arranged the slides, turning them over to see if they looked better reversed, shuffling them from one row to the other. At last the decision was made and my last task was to view the whole portfolio upside-down and from a slight distance to judge if the whole picture was balanced and pleasing.

Simplicity and impact are two words which I kept repeating to myself whilst struggling to assemble my portfolio. These two things were hard to achieve, but I always find it amazing when assembling a portfolio how easy it is to find five suitable slides, but that sixth is always the elusive nightmare.

Ghiannis D, my buddy Olly and diver (1997). Nikon 801s, fish-eye lens, Subal housing and Sea and Sea YS 120 flash.
Fish shoal in the hold of Ghiannis D (1999) Nikon 801s, 20mm lens, Subal housing and Sea and Sea YS 50 flash.
Silhouette of Ghiannis D and divers (1999). Nikon 801s, fish-eye lens, Subal housing
Clown fish and anemone on the deck of Ghiannis D (1995). Nikonos III, Sea and Sea 15mm prime lens and Ikelite Ai flash.
Starboard side of Ghiannis D (1995). Nikon 801s and fish-eye lens
Anthias around mast of Ghiannis D (1995). Nikonos III, Sea and Sea 15mm prime lens and Ikelite Ai flash.
BSoUP Theme Portfolio Competition

Theme Portfolio Winners

   

2017 Martyn Guess

2016 Mikko Voipio

2015 Pash Baker

2014 Robert Bailey

2013 Martyn Guess

2012 Keith Lyall

2011 Trevor Rees

2010 Martyn Guess

2009 Trevor Rees

2008 Arthur Kingdon

2007 JP Trenque

2006 Alex Mustard

2005 Alex Mustard

2004 Jane Morgan

2003 Linda Dunk

2002 Linda Dunk

2001 Linda Dunk

2000 Sue Heaps

1999 Bob Allen

1998 Bob Allen

1997 Anne Owen

1996 Ken Sullivan

1995 Anthony Holley


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