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  • Writer's pictureYPI CREW

Yachting Partners International recently announced the winners of its inaugural ‘Photo of The Year’ competition. The event was launched in the summer with the theme of ‘Quality Time at Sea’. Crew were invited to submit photos about their experiences, sights and memories related to this topic.


Employees in yacht crew jobs are regularly treated to memories of a lifetime through the unique moments that characterise life at sea; it’s no surprise, therefore, that the competition attracted hundreds of entries from no less than 23 countries around the world, including entries from crews, captains, nature photographers and sea lovers.


The Competition Categories


The winners were selected from four categories: Art/Abstract, Fun/Lifestyle, Action/Adventure and Nature/Landscape. The quality of the entries and their diverse subject matter was amazing, meaning the judges — representatives of YPI, Blueiprod, Dan Kennedy and PHA Media — really had their work cut when it came to choosing a winner. The winning shots were displayed at this year’s Monaco Yacht Show, in addition to featuring in the upcoming spring edition of YPI’s client magazine, 360°. The four winners also received the latest Go-Pro camera and a bottle of premium Perrier Jouët Belle Epoque champagne.


The Winners


ypi photography competition

Nature & Landscape category — Winner: Frank Ficken


The winner of the Nature/Landscape category was Frank Ficken, whose atmospheric early morning shot of a classic sailing yacht on still waters evokes peace and serenity. He commented on the picture:


“I think it's pretty much one of the best shots I've ever taken, so I'm glad others think so as well. It was one of those mornings in yachting where you're busy cleaning and chamoising and you happen to stop for a moment and look up and suddenly you remember just how beautiful a world yacht crew live in. The light on the rig and in the sky lasted only about 30 seconds. I'm glad my camera was sitting in the wheelhouse and I was able to capture it.”


ypi photography competition

Action & Adventure category — Winner: Rafael Cervantes Mataix


Rafael Cervantes Mataix, the Action & Adventure category winner, captured a shark dive at a shipwreck in New Providence. He spoke highly of the shark diving potential offered at this particular site in the Caribbean:


“We all had a great dive with the grey reef sharks and the black tips. It is one of the best Shark dives in the Caribbean and Bahamas.”


ypi photography competition

Art & Abstract category — Winner: Arshad Nasse


Arshad Nasse won the Art & Abstract category, and commented:


“Even though the water appears to be shallow, it is very deep in fact. The clear nature of water makes the boat look like it is floating in the air.”


ypi photography competition

Fun & Lifestyle category — Winner: Jarred Davidson


Jarred Davidson took the Fun & Lifestyle category. His photo captures himself with a selfie stick and other exuberant seafarers as they jump off a sailing yacht into the ocean. He said:


“Wow!! I am beyond stoked right now. Thank you so much! I am glad you enjoyed the photo and it made it to the top!”


What the Judges Said


Dan Kennedy, one of the UK’s leading fashion and celebrity photographers, was impressed with the quality of the submitted shots. He commented:


“It was a really close call choosing the final entries for the YPI Photo Competition, the quality of entries was exceptional. I was particularly struck by the fun element in some of the categories! It was a joy to judge and well done to those who entered but didn't win.”

Competition partner Blueiprod’s yacht photography expert, Olga Logvina, also praised the entries:


“We had a lot of fun going through the entries. It wasn’t easy picking our winners, these were shots that really captured a moment. No matter how long we have been doing this for, there’s always something fresh and exciting about that. I think the final selection really reflects the quality of shots sent through.”

Ian Smalley, PHA’s Creative Director was blown away by the diversity on display, he said:


“[The entries] captured a wide range of activities and experiences, from the drama of a close encounter with a shark to the serenity of a beautiful seascape.”

The Telegraph’s Luxury Travel Editor, John O’Ceallaigh, was struck by the insight given into the notoriously private superyacht fraternity. He said: 


“The photos reflected the importance of spending quality time with friends and family, and being quietly immersed in the most spectacular scenery, rather than shows of grandeur.”

Get Involved


If you regret missing out on the action, don’t worry; the chance to show the world your photography skills may still come. The success of the competition means it’s highly likely that you’ll have a chance to participate in the near future. YPI Commercial & Marketing Director Mark Duncan stated that the photography competition “has been great fun, and for those who didn’t manage to post their entries in time for this edition, I have a sneaking suspicion we will be doing it again very soon.” So watch this space!


If you are inspired by the winning photographs, and would like to find out whether you're suited to life at sea, please contact a member of the YPI CREW team to discuss yacht crew jobs.

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