Pretty as a picture...and worth his weight in gold...
POODLE TED WINS OWNER £5,000 PRIZE IN PHOTO COMPETITION
TED the miniature poodle has proved to be a man’s best friend after winning his owner £5,000 in a top Instagram photo competition.
Keen photographer Darren Hall has taken four years to get the perfect action shot of his furry friend and eventually caught him in midair at Alnmouth in Northumberland.
Now the 41-year-old has scooped the prestigious prize in the inaugural Photobox Instagram Photography Awards and is treating Ted to a weekend in the Lake District to celebrate.
Darren, of Gosforth, Newcastle, said: “I’ve been interested in dog photography for four years since I accidentally got a blurry photo of Ted in mid-air and since then I’ve been on a mission to get the perfect action shot.
“I love dogs, Ted goes everywhere with me.
“He comes to work and Ted is also wellknown around pubs in Newcastle from our walks. “The goal with my photography is to capture the hidden moments we miss with the naked eye and create special images that show the personality and spirit of our dogs. I like to photograph dogs outdoors, doing what they love best and all the chaos that comes with that.
“Ted is an absolute lunatic and is constantly creating moments of mayhem but I’m lucky because I have the best model.”
Ted, whose full name is Edward Montague, has been by Darren’s side since being a pup six years ago.
Darren, who is engaged to Caroline Greener, 42, added: “I was overall winner at the Photobox Instagram Awards beating over 180,000 entries and claiming the £5,000
The goal is to capture the hidden moments we miss with the naked eye and create special images Darren Hall
prize. I found out about my success at an awards show in London on the 3rd of October.
“I also received a judges’ special mention from the Kennel Club two days later at an awards show at the Kennel Club head quarters in Mayfair.”
But it was touch and go whether Darren was going to turn up at the awards as Ted was ill only days before and had to be rushed to the vets.
“The week of the awards was the best and worst week of my life. Ted took seriously ill on the Sunday before the awards and I rushed him to an emergency vets in Gosforth.
“He was passing blood and was hospitalised and placed on a drip.” said Darren.
“For the next two days I couldn’t eat or sleep for fear of losing my best friend.
“But after his treatment he started to make a recovery and by Tuesday he was well on his way to being normal Ted again.
“I was going to cancel attending the awards show but due to his upturn in health I decided to go.
“I did not expect to win but thought it was a great honour to be shortlisted due to the high standard of the photography in the competition. The feeling of Ted returning to full health combined with winning such a massive competition was too much to take and it’s hard to describe the feeling when they announced me as the overall winner.
“Two days later I returned to London for the dog photographer of the year awards at the Kennel Club where I got a special mention, another great honour as this is the largest dog photography competition in the world.
“It was a week that started as the worst week of my life and ended as the best.”
The Photobox Instagram Photography Awards are to celebrate the best photographs posted on the popular photo sharing app Instagram in the last 12 months.
Winners in categories including family, sport and travel won £500. The other winning pictures include one of a drone shot of a speedboat doing doughnuts.
More winners included a woman sporting blue face-paint at the Zinneke Parade and the twisted branches of a tree at a UNESCO World Heritage site in the Madeira Islands. After his success, sound engineer Darren is now setting up his own dog photography business to capture other people’s pets in photographs and video.
Darren added: “Since my recent success I have been inspired to set up a dog photography business to offer others the chance to get unique images of their dogs just like I have of Ted.
“I’m naming this venture ‘Wiggle Butt’ inspired by the funky strut of Edward Montague, aka Ted the Poodle.”
More photos at www.wigglebutt photo.com or Instagram @darren williamhall
Keen photographer Darren Hall, 41, with miniature poodle Ted