'Hypnotic' sand dunes image wins West Sussex photographer £10,000


A "hypnotic and contemplative" image of sand dunes has scooped the top prize in this year's Landscape Photographer of the Year Award.

Diminutive Dune, Sand forms at low tide
Diminutive Dune, Sand forms at low tide, won this year's award (Benjamin Graham)

Benjamin Graham beat thousands of entries to win £10,000 for his shot of dunes at low tide at West Wittering, West Sussex.

It is the third year running a photograph of the coastline has won the competition which celebrates the UK landscape.

The Cauldron, Grangemouth, Stirlingshire
(George Robertson)

Field of poppies
(Julian Eales)

An industrial landscape at Grangemouth, Stirlingshire, a classic English field of poppies and a striking black and white image of a person crossing a bridge in front of a torrent in Elan Valley, Wales, were among the category winners in the competition.

person crossing a bridge in front of a torrent in Elan Valley, Wales
(Paul Fowles)

A view of a stormy sky over the sea at Birling Gap, East Sussex, and a tranquil image of beach huts in Essex also topped their category.

The sea at Birling Gap in East Sussex
(Rachael Talibart)

Beach huts
(Neil Burnell)

Mr Graham, from near Bognor Regis, West Sussex, said he had been drawn to the ambiguity of the scene at West Wittering when taking his winning picture.

"As well as minimal simplicity, I particularly liked the indeterminate scale of the image. The double s-curve could be two metres long or two thousand - it was actually about 20," he said.

Awards founder and landscape photographer Charlie Waite said: "Benjamin's image has a hypnotic and contemplative quality that acts as an antidote to turbulent times.

"When at the coast we often just stand and gaze out to sea and seem to gain some kind of spiritual well-being from doing so.

"This image suggests the same emotional experience and the composition leads the eye on to infinite calm."

An urban skatepark
(Andrew Bulloch)

Andrew Bulloch, 15, from Edinburgh, won the Young Landscape Photographer of the Year title for his dramatic image of an urban skate park with the backdrop of the Northern Lights.

The awards are again being held in association with VisitBritain and the "Great" campaign to showcase moments and experiences that can only be had on a trip across Britain.

The VisitBritain 'home of amazing moments' award was won by Graham Niven, from Edinburgh, for his shot of an early morning boat trip on Loch Garten in the Cairngorms.

Early morning boat trip
(Graham Niven)

VisitBritain/VisitEngland chief executive Sally Balcombe said: "As Graham's spectacular image shows, Britain's diverse and stunning scenery offers a visual feast in which the viewer can imagine themselves at the centre of the experience."

And the Network Rail "lines in the landscape" award was won by Jon Martin, from Norwich, Norfolk, for his view of a train crossing the Barmouth Viaduct over the River Mawddach in North Wales.

A train crossing the Barmouth Viaduct over the River Mawddach in North Wales
(Jon Martin)

A free exhibition of winning entries will be held on the Balcony at London Waterloo station from Monday November 20 for 12 weeks before going on tour to selected stations nationwide.