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Winners Dive for the Prize

 

Cliff Wassmann’s “Orcas at Sunset” took first prize.

Cliff Wassmann’s “Orcas at Sunset” took first prize.

From a field of 65 submitted entries to its annual photo contest, the Laguna Bluebelt Coalition announced seven winners in two categories.

The contest focuses attention on preserving Laguna Beach’s marine habitats, which is the coalition’s aim as well.

“We had unseasonably warm ocean temperatures in 2014 which I believe added to the diversity of sea life found in the photo contest entries,” said photographer Patsee Ober, who with professional photographers Mark Chamberlain and Mitch Ridder judged the contest.

Michelle Hoalton shows she’s at home in the sea, winning first place in the amateur category with “Swimming with the Fishes.”

Michelle Hoalton shows she’s at home in the sea, winning first place in the amateur category with “Swimming with the Fishes.”

“The judges were very impressed by the caliber of both amateur and professional entries this year,” said Ober. “It was very challenging to score such quality images of Laguna’s Marine Protected Area.”

In the amateur division:

First Place: Michelle Hoalton, “Swimming with the Fishes”

Second Place: Lucas Austin, “Falling Water”

Third Place: Andrea Stockert, “Gotcha”

Honorable Mention: Alicia Warwick, “Summer Sunset”

Lucas Austin took second in the amateur division for “Falling Water.”

Lucas Austin took second in the amateur division for “Falling Water.”

In the professional division:

First Place: Cliff Wassmann, “Orcas at Sunset”

Second Place: Sean Brown, “Tide Pool”

Third Place: Matthew Saville, “Small World”

The winning photos will be exhibited at Gallery Q in the Susi Q Community Center during the summer and an artist’s reception is planned for July.

Sean Brown’s “Tide Pool” took second in the pro category.

Sean Brown’s “Tide Pool” took second in the pro category.

See all the entries at lagunabluebelt.org.

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  1. Jinger

    Thanks to the Indy for covering our local photo contest celebrating Laguna’s marine life and protected areas!

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