Inside this issue
I am a 16 year old photographer from Edinburgh. Although I’m still at school, I was privileged to win the Take-A-View UK Young Landscape Photographer of the Year in 2017 and then the Youth "Urban View" category in 2018. I am also the current Junior Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year 2017 (as well as 2016!) and was runner up in the Scottish Junior Landscape Photographer of the Year 2016 and 2017. It’s been a whirlwind few years for me, but I just enjoy getting out into the countryside or even around the city with my camera.
Skye is usually the photographer’s favourite destination in the North West of Scotland but on a family summer holiday with my parents, we went one ferry further and travelled to the Outer Hebrides, basing ourselves in North Uist. The weather was definitely more suited to photography than sunbathing with very changeable conditions, the western beaches offering views as far as St. Kilda before huge rainclouds rolled in off the Atlantic to soak us.
Almost every evening we climbed up a small hill near our holiday cottage to try to catch a sunset. It offered us a 360 degree view of the island and despite the wind being very calm, incredibly there wasn’t even a single midge around to annoy us. From there, the cloud formations were a dramatic sight throughout the week, from wispy spirals to dinosaur shapes and some of the biggest cumulonimbuses I’ve ever seen! One of my favourite photos has a cloud formation that looks like a giant spaceship emerging through the clouds before hitting warp speed and disappearing to a distant galaxy far, far away.
But on our final day, it was stormy and we drove all the way down through South Uist and crossed over to Eriskay. As we reached it, we saw a Sea Eagle fly over, heading for Barra. Leaping out of the car we missed photographing the eagle, but we took the chance to explore the coastal landscape. Despite the sky now being overcast and the light fading, there was still sufficient colour in the Hebridean waters and exposed kelp to provide contrast and compositional interest around the shoreline.
As we finally neared the southern end of Eriskay we rounded a hill, and looking down and out to sea, there was the most picturesque football pitch I have ever seen. Being a keen footballer I insisted we went down and played on it but not before getting a photo of it with the dramatic clouds in the background. Very recently we found out it was featured by FIFA as one of the eight most unique places to play football in the world! The photo went on to win me the 2017 Junior Scottish Nature Photographer of the Year so it was definitely worth all the extra miles to get there.