December 11 2013 Latest news:
Thursday, October 24, 2013
It is wildlife picture with the “ah” factor as two seals appear to kiss as they frolic in the surf.
But the “lucky” shot by a Cromer amateur photographer has won a spot in a charity calendar raising cash for wildlife causes in the region.
Malcolm English sat for two chilly hours at the Donna Nook nature reserve on the Lincolnshire coast to get the winning picture.
“I am not a wildlife photography expert, so I do not have the specialist clothing - just five layers of vests and jumpers,” he explained.
The picture appears as the January shot in the Anglia Co-operative’s 2014 Regional Wildlife Calendar.
But it was taken a year ago, in October, at a time when the area - which is also partly a Ministry of Defence bombing range - was teeming with seals, ready to give birth.
“Some were on the beach. Some were playing in the water,” said 69-year-old Mr English.
“A couple were frolicking, so I did quite a lot of shots of the pair - and I was lucky that the surf broke when it did to allow me to get the picture.”
Mr English, from Highview Park, is a former aeronautical engineer, who also edited Air International Magazine until he retired three years ago, and has written books which feature his own pictures.
He has been a keen amateur photographer for 50 years, specialising in aircraft pictures but also enjoys shooting portraits and landscapes. He is a member of two local photographic societies, and also judges photo competitions.
“I have won a few competitions over the years but I am delighted as this is the first natural history award,” added Mr English.
He remains a flying fan, piloting an aircraft based at Little Snoring airfield, and provides photos for the Shuttleworth Collection of historic aircraft including calendar shots.
One of his landscape pictures, of the lighthouse and golf course, features in this year’s Jarrold Cromer calendar.
The seal picture was captured with a Nikon D300 using a 300mm F2.8 lens and a 1.4 times converter.
The Co_op Wildlife calendar last year raised £15,000 which is given to wildlife activities across the region.
This year, combined with Christmas cards also featuring amateur photos, the aim is to raise £50,000.
The calendar and Christmas cards are on sale at Anglia Co-operative foodstores and online at www.shop.coopcompetition.co.uk