OPINION: Superyacht Awards

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 Advice for Entering Superyacht Award Contests The importance of photo and film

Every year excitement mounts in preparation of events celebrating superyachts for their design, form and function. Prior to the big announcements, judges have poured over numerous submissions trying to decipher what makes one yacht extra special compared to others.

Some of the judges can call on their first-hand knowledge gained from when they viewed the yacht at a show, at its home port or when they made a special visit to a remote location. Make no mistake these judges take their role very seriously, we know of at least one who spent in excess of $250,000 per annum making sure he saw them all. But for some, visiting every shortlisted yacht can be prove a logistical challenge.

Peter Wilson, project manager - MCM and World Superyacht Awards Judge says “As a World Superyacht Awards judge, I endeavour to personally inspect as many of the nominated yachts as is physically possible. However, due to logistics, their locations around the world, plus other commitments, it’s challenging to see them all. Of course, nothing beats actually stepping on board to get an up-close and personal look, but in the absence of such a visit, I rely heavily on great photography and video. Together, these are great tools to help evaluate the yacht and her nuances, as if done well, one is “virtually” on board”

If a judge has not personally been onboard, they must rely on feedback from those who have and what has been supplied by the entrant - photos, video and text. Not surprisingly the ones we have spoken to agree it’s difficult to make decisions if the media supplied doesn’t convey the true sense of the yacht. Whether it’s the composition, the sense of space and light, the colours or details, the images and videos need to make the judges feel as if they are virtually on board.

Investment in the very best photography and film is therefore critical and could simply make or break a yacht's chance of success. With 15 years of shooting superyachts behind us, and first-hand experience of many award events, we able to to ensure all photos and films supplied truly reflect the uniqueness and quality of every entry.

However, regardless of how well we capture the yacht, it can all count for nothing if the submission misses the deadline. We are constantly amazed at how every year there is a mad panic for photos and film specifically for awards. Surely it comes as no surprise to entrants that they have entered a competition with entry deadlines! So why then do they jeopardise their chances of success with last minute pleas to produce content? Our experience has been that the most prestigious competitions have the strictest rules and deadlines to make sure judges have the time to give every entrant equal and fair consideration. Organisers tell us that late arrivals are likely dismissed entirely rather than risk being reviewed hastily and incorrectly. Take it from us, multiple last minute pleas for images creates one huge deadline challenge; a challenge that one day could be impossible to overcome, resulting in to a disaster for all.

So, if you are thinking of entering a yacht in an awards competition invest in the very best media, and allow plenty of time to get it produced prior to the deadline.