Winning smile takes top honours in Irish Examiner’s 2017 Readers Photography Competition

With her winning smile to match her father’s winning ways, Wayne Allen’s four year old daughter Charlotte doesn’t

Runner-up Martin Duggan, left, and Wayne Allen, second right, with Paddy Barker of sponsors Barker Photographic and, right, Jim Coughlan, visual media manager, Irish Examiner. Picture: Larry Cummins

look shy as she towers over the mushrooms in the Curragh Woods of Midleton, Co Cork.

“She is shy and very quiet when she is out, but one of those terrors at home,” says Wayne, who took the photograph on his mobile phone in late August.

“I bought a camera about five years ago but it is about a year since I used it. I have the phone with me at all times and I like to take pictures on it.”

He can now build on his skills, having won the first prize of €1,000 worth of photographic equipment donated by sponsors Barker Photographic. Both runners-up take home vouchers for €250.

From Dungourney in East Cork, Wayne, who works as a quality engineer with Dell EMC, often takes Charlotte and her six-year-old brother Rhys to the countryside and loves the woods near Lisgoold.

“It’s a grand old spot and it’s great for the kids because if they are in the house all day, they get restless,” he says.

Wayne’s photo of his daughter, who is now four, won the Irish Examiner’s 2017 Readers Photography Competition. He had not planned on entering until his mother encouraged him.

“I showed her the picture when I brought a copy of the Examiner, which I do every Saturday and she said I should send it in, so I did.”

First runner-up Martin Duggan, from Shandon St, Cork, is a keen amateur photographer. His art-like portrait of Connemara Man was taken using a Nikon D700 outside a pub in Clifden, Co Galway.

“I was doing seascapes and I thought I would go for a beer when I spotted this chap outside the door,” says Martin. “I smiled at him. He was obviously a local and he did not mind having his photo taken.”

Early morning at smoky Mount Errigal, Co Donegal, won Pawel Zygmunt the second runner-up slot in the photography competition. ’I travel all over the countryside. I go out and visit places and photography is just added value when I am out and about. My favourite place is Donegal,’ said Pawel.

Martin, who has a cobbler’s business on Shandon St, is a people person in every sense.

“I look out the window of my business and I see people passing,” he says. “I always have a camera ready. I love photographing people, particularly older people with interesting and lived-in faces with a story to tell. It’s a break from looking at shoes all day.”

The second runner-up is Pawel Zygmunt, from Dublin, whose stunning photo of Mount Errigal in Co Donegal won him a place in the final of the competition.

Originally from Poland but now settled here with a family, he loves the Irish countryside.

“I have been here for 13 years and I travel all over the countryside,” says Pavel. “I go out and visit places and photography is just added value when I am out and about. My favourite place is Donegal. I love it there.”

The 2018 competition is now open. Each week two pictures will be chosen and featured on the Forum pages of the Saturday edition of the Irish Examiner.

The two winners will receive a high-quality A3 print of the page and will go through to the final at the end of the year.

For more details go online to

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