Photographing the Challenge Wales Yacht

Photographing the Challenge Wales Yacht

Wednesday February 11, 2015

A Round-the-World Yacht Photographed in Penarth Harbour

Firstly, I have to admit that I am not and have never been a sailor.  The nearest that I have come to sailing a boat is on the lake at Roath Park.  However, being on the deck of a sleek yacht powering across the crashing waves is something that I've always wanted to experience and so I jumped at the chance of stepping aboard the Challenge Wales Round-the-World yacht during their open day.

Thankfully, the yacht was harboured in Penarth Marina and we didn't have any large waves to contend with. It was a rather gentle introduction to sailing.

Challenge Wales is an amazing charity dedicated to providing young people (aged between 12 and 25 years of age) a chance to develop their self-esteem and life-skills of team working and communication through the experience of sailing.  I first met Vicky, one of the trustees, at a thebestof networking event last year at their offices in Cardiff and was immediately taken by their objectives and aims.

Armed with my Canon 5D and a few lenses, I wanted to try and take photographs that captured the character of the yacht and of sailing in general.  Being a layman, I thought about what I would recognise and how that could be communicated through an image.  Below deck, the limited space meant that to tell the story I had to use a fisheye lens.  This enabled me to show a cabin or the main communications area in one photograph.

We were blessed with a beautiful blue sky, low sun and freezing temperatures, but this was perfect as a backdrop to the sails and the wider shots of the yacht.  I took some close up shots of brightly coloured ropes and shiny pulleys and, of course, the Ship's Wheel and, hopefully, they provide a visual insight into the world of sailing. 

It was a real fun few hours and everyone in the Challenge Wales team was fantastic.  Their enthusiasm was infectious and everyone who came and board left excited and keen to get involved.

A selection of the photographs can be seen on my website and I am looking forward to the next Challenge Wales project.

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