x Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 19 January 2018

Award-winning picture was taken through airliner window

First prize in a National Geographic photography competition for shot of Dubai skyscrapers in clouds was taken with a Canon point-and-shoot as aircraft came in to land.

DUBAI // On a cloudy morning in April last year, photographer Wijnand Van Till pressed the lens of his point-and-shoot camera against the cabin window of his aircraft as it circled above Dubai.

His Emirates flight from Nigeria was delayed from landing and the time Mr Van Till spent in the air yielded hundreds of opportunities to put his camera to use, said the 34-year-old Dutch telecommunications consultant. He was rewarded with an image that won a National Geographic photo contest.

“We were circling around and around and I was just continuing to take pictures,” he said. “I have a whole series of photos.”

His image of the Dubai skyline shrouded in clouds won first prize in the landscape category in a photography competition hosted by the Dutch edition of National Geographic in Amsterdam last week. It was taken with a Canon IXUS 960, a simple point-and-shoot with a 12.1 megapixel resolution.

“I don’t think the judges were that shocked,” he said about the type of equipment used to get the winning shot. “Cameras are getting more advanced these days.”

A resident of Dubai for three years, Mr Van Till takes pictures of the highrise skyscrapers of the emirate as part of his hobby. However, his favourite holiday destination for pictures is on safari in Africa, which is where he met his wife and where he will go as a result of his winning the contest. First prize was a trip to Kenya.

The picture of Dubai has won him previous plaudits. He finished first in the Emirates country category in April in a competition hosted by the Gulf Photo Plus organisation, winning a Canon 500D, a single-lens reflex camera worth some Dh4,700.