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10 stunning shots from Subsurface Journal 3
Subsurface editor, Gaz Fareham, pulls out his ten favourite shots (along with quotes) from this year's journal: SSJ3...

1. Mike Brown ‘Everywhere and Nowhere’

‘Perched precariously on a sea of knee-deep, clinging mud, which made every muscle in your legs ache, we sat through day after day of unrelenting gales and electric storms whilst the rigs remained in the butt rings. No carp is worth risking your life for, not even the one you’ve always dreamed of catching. It was simply too dangerous to take to the boats, so we sat patiently waiting for a break; hopes and prayers. Then there was a sudden window of chance, a moment of calm, much like the eye of a hurricane, so we manned the oars and set to work. This is the reality of big-water fishing; small moments of opportunity in a harsh and unforgiving scene that is controlled by Mother Nature herself, but ultimately supremely rewarding. The line between success and failure is a thin one, at best’

2. Mark Palmer ‘Through the Looking Glass’

‘I always approach taking a shot purely on what I think is right. I like to keep an open mind when it comes to it. I suppose what motivates me is being in the correct environment, and being in contact with nature has a big impact on the outcome of a picture.’

3. Jon Skold ‘The End or the Means’

‘Choosing to challenge such a large water, over 50 hectares, and one that might only hold one carp for every tenth of its acreage, is obviously something that most would just laugh about and dismiss as wasted time. ‘Did you often get dropped to the floor as a kid, mate?’ No, I just have that special fault in my head. I want the unknown and unreal. I desire the untouched and the unexplored, and I do it because it is one of the few things in life that gives me that feeling. That magical feeling of letting the hyperactive and artificial world that everyday life brings to us just dissolve and vanish, at least for once’

4. Liam Richards ‘Lo Pro’

‘It’s not really the type of venue that appeals to me, as such; it’s more the challenge that it holds. It could be a silty, little estate lake with a handful of shy, old carp, or a big, windswept gravel pit that takes three hours to walk around. As long as I'm being pushed mentally and physically I feel at home, as mad as that might sound. It’s more about the sense of achievement, pursuit, and the journey that gives me a buzz, that raw challenge has to be there for me to stay focused’

5. Marcus Howarth ‘For Love, Not Money’

‘I just don’t care about my kit, at all (laughing). I couldn’t give a fuck, as long as my rig is as sharp and well presented as I can make it. None of that fancy kit makes any difference, as long as that final bit is as right as I can make it, that’s the only bit I care about’

6. Derek Harrison ‘Sand and Concrete’

‘They can be here one minute, and then they’re 10 kilometres away in an afternoon. I actually caught one fish where the connection pit is, and two days later I caught it at the other end of the canal, 12 kilometres away.’

7. Alex Kobler ‘Happy Medium’

‘Everything has its price. However, we are also well aware how valuable time and freedom are’

8. Rupert Torp ‘Rolling with the Punches’

‘The undergrowth ejected me out of the human world and pushed me into the unknown. I felt in good hands as it guided me across the crystal clear water, huge gravel mounds cascading off the bottom in all directions and weedbeds the size of football pitches appearing under my feet.’

9. Simon Hartop ‘26/06/96’

‘He was shamelessly biking it in on a woman's bike - one basket on the front and another at the back – and this questionable charabanc was then stashed unceremoniously in the bracken with an underarm lob. To stop it being lost, Ritchie had tied a length of rope to it, which he would peg down so that he could retrieve it when more hemp was needed.’

10. Stuart Linto ‘Lo Pro’

‘We’ve thrown ourselves back on the mercy of the gales and driving rain, those moments that make us feel truly alive again. We have stalked, watched, and waited for our prey, learned their secret places and studied their nuances. In an ever-increasing, insular world, activities like ours are seen as abnormal - like we’re some sort of misfits - but maybe we are, and that’s what appeals. I feel close to nature because I’ve decided be a part of it. We are not two parallel lines running side by side, but are entwined.’

Gaz Fareham
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