The Judges

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  • Jeanie Lazenby
    Judge & 2017 Category Winner

    Jeanie is an enthusiastic photographer with a passion for landscapes, particularly if there is water in them, be it sea, loch, lake, river or waterfall. Shying away from clear, sunny skies generally, she prefers to shoot in dramatic, moody conditions when the light play creates impact. Her favourite playground is the North West of Scotland and the Hebrides, though she is just an hour or so from the Lake District, Yorkshire Dales and North Wales. It’s all about the light and the patience waiting for it.

    Having people come to her wishing to buy her work for personal prints or for publication humbles her, as she loves to take images for herself first and foremost. She does not enter many photographic competitions but has been very lucky to be commended and highly commended over the years, and then chosen as the overall winner of the Landscape category and also winner of the Spring section of the Four Seasons category in SLPOTY 2017. Jeanie was also very lucky to have had her image chosen to be the cover image in Year 2 of this competition.

  • Paul Webster
    Judge & 2017 Overall Winner

    Paul has had a lifelong passion for walking, wild places and for exploring on foot. The co-author of fifteen books and several magazine articles on Scottish walking, Paul won the Scottish Landscape Photographer of the Year title in 2018; his interest in photography grew from his great love of the outdoors. In 2003-4 Paul undertook a 4,000 mile continuous walk across Europe with his wife Helen. He lives in the Cairngorms National Park in the Scottish Highlands.

    He is the co-founder of the award-winning Walkhighlands website, a social network and free online guide for walkers in Scotland.

    Walk Highlands

  • Chris Swan
    Judge & 2016 Overall Winner

    Christoper Swan is an award-winning photographer from Glasgow specialising in atmospheric landscape photography of Scotland.

    Constantly drawn to the wild places, Christopher has spent the last 15 years exploring and photographing the Highlands and Islands, captivated by the drama, beauty and unique qualities of the Scottish landscape.

    He was the overall winner of SLPOTY in 2016, and Runner Up in the inaugural competition.

  • Belinda DiQuinzio
    Judge & Category Winner

    Belinda DiQuinzio specialises in mountain photography and was the winner of the Scottish National Heritage award in the 2016 competition. Originally from Nova Scotia, Canada, Belinda has adopted Scotland as her beloved home and is most happy exploring its myriad landscapes for recreation and artistic inspiration. Through her photography, Belinda hopes to inspire others to discover, enjoy and protect Scotland’s natural heritage for present and future generations. Her knowledge and experience of the mountains is a great asset to the judging process and she recognizes the skill and perseverance needed in producing award-winning photography.

  • Stuart Low
    Founder & Head Judge

    Stuart has been an expert landscape photographer and tutor for over 30 years. Boasting a portfolio that spans the 5 continents, it is his knowledge of the Scottish landscape that is unsurpassed and he spends the majority of his time seeking out unseen views, many of which have since become iconic shots. As well as being an expert film photographer and printer, his expertise in digital photography is at the very highest level having developed advanced techniques and software plugins for digital cameras.

  • Vanda Ralevska

    Vanda is a photographer based in London. Passionate about capturing the world we live in, she is always searching for those fleeting moments of light that transform it into something extraordinary. Finding inspiration in the sea and its infinite power and uncontrollable energy, in quieter scenes and intimate details that abound in nature.

    In her images she strives to reflect the atmosphere, feeling, and sheer wonderment that our natural world can evoke within us. For Vanda, photography is more than just a recording of where she has been. It is about encompassing the whole experience of being in the outdoors, and trying to capture that one special moment that leaves a lasting impression on us.

    Vanda’s images and articles have been published in magazines, exhibited in the UK and abroad and have received awards in international competitions. Aside from photography Vanda enjoys giving lectures at camera clubs, hoping to inspire others to find the beauty that exists within everyday scenes, and to look beyond the obvious.

  • Cath waters

    Cath is a Scottish landscape digital artist and photographer.

    Much of the inspiration for her landscape work comes from campervan travels around Scotland. She loves the “wide open spaces, vast grey skies and low light of the Scottish West Coast and the Hebrides” and tries to capture the solitude and calm of these special places. There is a strong sense of simplicity, space and solitude in her work, her compositions often leading the eye to whimsical detail in big open spaces.

  • Athena Carey

    Athena Carey is a multi-award winning fine art travel photographer specializing in long exposure and black and white photography. She is widely recognized for her ability to capture the emotional essence of place and time within her images.

    Aside from travel, another of Athena’s great joys is teaching others the technical aspects of photography, how to find their own artistic vision; and then to harness the two together to express themselves through their photography. To this end, she teaches photo courses online and locally and offers workshops globally.

  • Ian Cameron
    Judge & 2015 Overall Winner

    Ian Cameron was the overall winner of the competition in 2015.

    Ian considers that the essence of good landscape photography seems to boil down to three things: composition, timing and light and he believes that this final ingredient, light, its colour, quality and strength is the single biggest infuence on the success or otherwise of the final image. Scotland more than any other country he has tackled, challenges the photographer’s patience and skill; it toys with you, teases you with amazing light, then laughs at you as you struggle in shrieking wind and rain to record that rapidly fading moment of magic.

The competition uses a “triple blind” judging system to ensure the fairest judging possible. All images in the shortlist and final round were viewed “blind” by the judges. Blind means the images were viewed without any identifying information such as names,descriptions etc., and this ensures that images are scored on their visual impact alone. All scores are analysed individually and collectively to arrive at the final scores. A detailed account of the judging process will be posted after the final results are announced.

The Wild Places Prizes are judged by the Trustees of the John Muir Trust. Their judging process is conducted in a closed room where the trustees will discuss and consider the merits and visual appeal of each images, and how it fits with the aims of the category. The trustees are expert in the areas they look after and their expertise and knowledge of the landscape is of the very highest level.

The Spirit of the Sea award is judged by the staff and directors of Caledonian MacBrayne. A selection of images chosen for the shortlist in this category is provided to Caledonian MacBrayne. The merits and visual appeal of the images are considered by their appointed staff and voted on. The image that best fits the look, feel and spirit of the category.

The Calumet Choice Award is judged by the staff of Calumet Photographic. A selection of images chosen for the shortlist in this category is provided to Calumet. The merits and visual appeal of the images are considered by their appointed staff and voted on.

The Historic Scotland protected places award is judged by the marketing team of Historic Scotland. A selection of images chosen for the shortlist in this category is provided to Historic Scotland. The image is considered by visual appeal and how well the image captures a protected place.

The protected places – national secnic area award is chosen by Lorne Gill and selected staff of Scottish Natural Heritage. A selection of images chosen for the shortlist in this category is provided and the image that best fits the National Scenic Area/Protected place is chosen. The staff of Scottish Natural Heritage are the foremost experts in these areas with a deep understanding of the protected places in in Scotland