Competition Winners 2015-16

Tickle My Chin
Keith Hann
Oare Church - Madeline Taylor
Madeline Taylor
Conygar Tower - Jenny Gibson
Jenny Gibson

The Exmoor Society’s Alfred Vowles Photographic Competition 2015­–16

Once again, the popular Alfred Vowles Photographic Competition, organised every two years by the Exmoor Society, has celebrated the skill of amateur photographers in capturing scenes that convey the essence of Exmoor. The judges were delighted by the variety and large number of entries in each of the three categories: Landscape, Wildlife, and Heritage.

The overall winner of the coveted trophy, donated by Alfred Vowles’ family, is Keith W Hann with an amusing photograph in the Wildlife category ‘Please tickle my chin’, showing an Exmoor pony scratching its jaw on a fingerpost. It is a quintessentially Exmoor scene. The judges were impressed by the excellent composition and the unusual pose, which showed Mr Hann’s empathy with the pony.  They commented: ‘The photographer must have been very patient for the animal to be so relaxed.’

In the Landscape category, the winner is Madeline Taylor for ‘Oare church in the snow’, a tranquil, well-composed scene drawing the eye into a timeless image.  The Heritage category winner is Jenny Gibson for her ‘Conygar Tower, Dunster’, an excellently observed view where light and shade are most effectively used.  Highly commended are Madeline Taylor’s view ‘Exmoor in winter’ (Landscape); Roger Parsons’ ‘Stag taken between Dunkery Beacon and Cloutsham’ (Wildlife); and Jenny Gibson’s ‘Tom Lock of Hawkridge, 2015’ (Heritage).

The judges appreciated the high standard of the entries and the thought and effort that all the photographers had put into producing such a wide range of images in both colour and black and white. A display of the photographs can be seen at The Exmoor Society headquarters, 34 High Street, Dulverton between 10am and 4pm, Monday to Friday.

Alfred Vowles was a well-known photographer who from the turn of the 20th century until the 1940s devoted his life to recording the scenery, life and people of Exmoor. His early work is said by experts to have influenced the direction of photography not only as an important record of the time but also as an art form in its own right.  He is regarded as synonymous with the imagery of Exmoor as R D Blackmore’s Lorna Doone is to its literature.