Open Championship of Underwater Photography Lake Baikal Cup.
On June 21-25, 2017 Listvyanka settlement (Irkutsk region, Lake Baikal) hosted Open Championship of Underwater Photography Lake Baikal Cup. Suchlike competitions were last held in the Baikal in 1980th (1985, 1987 and 1989), so the event served as a sort of revival of a forgotten tradition.
The competition opening ceremony took place in The Baikal Museum with an exhibition of retro-photographs (made by one of the participants of the first competitions Lake Baikal Cup, Sergey Glushenko (Ukraine)) in the background.
Hotel U Ozera (By the Lake) was chosen as the base-camp of the competition: our dive-centre BaikalTek was located there; on its premises we arranged the press-centre of the competition, and it also welcomed and accommodated the competition participants.
During the 4 days of the competition there were about 30 people underwater, 15 of whom are professional and beginner photographers from Irkutsk, Ulan-Ude, Moscow, Sverdlovsk region, Tyumen city and the Czech Republic. The participants competed in the major nominations: Underwater Landscape, The Man and The Baikal, Lake Baikal Macro, Lake Baikal Art as well as in our partners’ special nominations.
During the championship all diving arrangements were made by dive-centre BaikalTek with a great support provided by Limnological Institute divers’ group, dive-centre Sval, The Baikal Museum. Dives in the framework of the competition were made in three dive-areas of the Baikal (Listvyanka, Circum-Baikal Railway, Bolshiye Koty) and all the participants took turns diving in each area, which created equal opportunities for all.
We used The Baikal Museum boat Professor Treskov as our dive boat. Vladimir Fialkov - the Head of The Baikal Museum - was one of the organizers and participants of the competitions held in 1980th and for him personally our present-day competition was a symbol of time link.
Apart from the photographer-participants there were volunteers (BaikalTek divers) - guides and models underwater. It should be noted, that the competition participants were greatly assisted by BaikalTek volunteers.
The Championship Jury are international judges, well-known underwater photographers: David Pilosof (Israel) - the organizer of a significant underwater photography competition in Eilat, Michel Roggo (Switzerland) - a participant of 4 expeditions of Lake Baikal, Michael AW (Singapore) - Ocean Geographic magazine, Irina Kochergina (Russia) - Neptune magazine - Chairperson, Anna Kochergina (Neptune magazine) - Secretary. The jury meeting was held in the on-line regime via Internet-channel. 135 photos were examined in the four major nominations.
In the meantime The Baikal Museum hosted the jury meeting of the experts, directly connected with Lake Baikal, who know its water area and characteristics. Local jury board: Vladimir Fialkov (The Baikal Museum), Igor Khanayev (Limnological Institute), Mikhail Yablokov and Nadezhda Nikolenko (Zapovednoye Pribaikalye), Irina Lyasota (Baikalskiy Biosferniy Zapovednik (Lake Baikal Biosphere Reserve)), Konstantin Prosekin (Zapovednoye Podlemorye), Nadezhda Kazakova (EN+Group), Yelena Samsonova (VostSibUgol (East Siberia Coal)), Olga Kamenskaya (underwater photographer).
It proved to be hard time for the jury, as each of them had to choose a photo/photos, corresponding with the nomination the partners proposed. Sometimes the opinions coincided and one picture was chosen by different partners. Over 200 competition pictures were examined by the jury.
Winners in our partners’ special nominations:
«360 minutes» - En+Group and All-Russian Volunteer Eco-marathon En+ Group «360 minutes»
Dmitriy Rogovoy (Irkutsk) - special prize «360 min»
“Life in pure water” - from The Baikal Museum of ISC SB RAS
Svetlana Suslova (Moscow) – bathyscaphe imitation submersion for 2 people
“Terrestrial Landscape” - from Lake Baikal Biosphere Reserve
Živa Lípová (the Czech Republic) - certificate for 2 people - a 5 days’ trip to Kabanskiy Sanctuary, the bird kingdom in the valley of the Selenga River
«Landspace» - from Zapovednoye Pribaikalye Reserve
Yulia Aizina (Irkutsk) - certificate for 2 people - a 2 days’ tour Wild Animals Watching on the territory of Zapovednoye Pribaikalye
Andrey Sidorov (Moscow) - certificate for 2 people - a 1 day car tour in Tazheranskiye Steppe in Zapovednoye Pribaikalye
Oksana Rosliakova (Tyumen) - a souvenir set from Zapovednoye Pribaikalye
«A Photo Coverage»
Dmitriy Polianskiy (Moscow) – special prize from Neptune magazine
«Eutrophication and Its Consequences» from Limnological Institute
Andrey Sidorov (Moscow) – special prize from Limnological Institute
“Lake Baikal. Present-day Problems in Shallow Waters” from Limnological Institute
Oksana Rosliakova (Tyumen) – special prize from Limnological Institute
“Lake Baikal Underwater Biodiversity" from Limnological Institute
Irina Bushkova (Ekaterinburg) - special prize from Limnological Institute
«Beginner Author» from Olga Kamenskaya Gallery
Yulia Aizina – special prize from Olga Kamenskaya Gallery
MAJOR NOMINATIONS WINNERS:
1 place – Andrey Sidorov (Moscow) - a certificate for any dive safari from dive-centre BaikalTek
2 place - Oksana Rosliakova (Tyumen) - a prize from Neptune magazine
3 place - Dmitriy Rogovoy (Irkutsk) - En+Group and VostSibUgol (East Siberia Coal) prize
The Man and The Baikal
1 place – Andrey Sidorov (Moscow) - a certificate for a 7 days’ photo tour in the Ushkanyi Islands from Zapovednoye Podlemorye Reserve
2 place - Yevgeniy Safonov (Irkutsk) - a prize from Neptune magazine
3 place - Ladislav Smelik (the Czech Republic) - En+Group and VostSibUgol (East Siberia Coal) prize
Lake Baikal Macro
1 place - Yevgeniy Safonov (Irkutsk) - participation in an expedition around Lake Baikal from Limnological Institute SB RAS
2 place - Irina Bushkova (Sverdlovsk region) - a prize from Neptune magazine
3 place - Bohumír Kráčmar (Czech Republic) - En+Group and VostSibUgol (East Siberia Coal) prize
Lake Baikal Art
1 place - Oksana Rosliakova (Tyumen) - a participation certificate for a 10 days’ dive camp in Bolshiye Koty from dive-centre Sval
2 place - Andrey Sidorov (Moscow) - a prize from Neptune magazine
3 place - Yelena Azarova (Moscow) - En+Group and VostSibUgol (East Siberia Coal) prize
All mojor nominations winners got special souvenir bottle-cups with silver engraving from the competition partner Vodka Organika
Andrey Sidorov (Moscow) - the Cup and cash prize
The closing ceremony and presentation of awards to the winners took place in a conference hall of The Baikal Museum. David Pilosof - one of the members of the international jury - greeted everybody via an Internet-channel and pointed it out, that the participants’ professional level and the quality photos under examination equal to those at prestigious international competitions, despite the severe dive conditions in the cold waters of Lake Baikal.
The representatives of all partners of the competition took part in the awarding ceremony personally. The festive occasion finished in the exhibition hall of the Museum.
Following the idea of Andrey Sidorov (the competition winner) it was decided to keep The Cup at The Baikal Museum and declare it a challenge cup.
Competition organizers: a magazine about underwater world “Neptune 21 Century”, with support from dive-centre BaikalTek and Olga Kamenskaya Gallery.
Official partners of the competition: The Baikal Museum of Irkutsk Scientific Centre of Siberian Brunch of Russian Academy of Sciences, Limnoligical Institute SB RAS, dive-centre Sval, Hotel U Ozera (By The Lake), The Baikal Biosphere Reserve, Federal State Budgetary Institution “Zapovednoye Podlemorye”, FSBI “Zapovednoye Pribaikalye”, Vodka Organica, Lake Baikal Seal Aquarium, En+ Group, All-Russia Volunteer Eco-marathon En+ Group «360 minutes», Union of Wild Life Photographers.
With support from: Irkutsk District Administration, Lake Baikal Rescue Brigade of Ministry of Emergencies of Russia.
Photographer participants: Bohumír Kráčmar, Josef Krouza, Živa Lípová, Ladislav Smelik (the Czech Republic), Yelena Azarova, Anna Kochergina, Dmitriy Polianskiy, Andrey Sidorov (Moscow), Irina Bushkova (Sverdlovsk region), Gennadiy Baklanov (Ulan-Ude), Oksana Rosliakova (Tyumen), Svetlana Suslova (Moscow), Yulia Aizina, Dmitriy Rogovoy, Yevgeniy Safonov (Irkutsk).
Special participant – underwater artist: Yelena Vorontsova (Moscow)
Volonteers: Igor Khanayev, Ivan Nebesnikh, Valeriy Chernikh (Limnological Institute), Oleg Gotovko, Marina Pupikina, Alexander Rafael, Anna Sharatskikh, Yelena Taiger, Alexey Gulevich, Tatiana Geryatovich, Yury Alekseev, Yustina Aizina, Yevgeniy Masternak (dive-centre BaikalTek), Andrey Dimitrevich, Valeriy Glushenko, Vsevolod Potapov (dive-centre Sval).
Organizers: Irina Kochergina, Olga Kamenskaya, Dmitriy Melamed, Tatiana Oparina, Gennadiy Misan.