2021 GoPro Photo of the Year

Presented by


The official logo of title sponsor GoPro
GoPro’s not only take the best POV videos.. they grab amazing photos from angles achievable only from the athletes perspective.

[ Full Interviews with Top 3 Photo Finalists Featured Below ]

WINNER

Dane Jackson

Feature | Number 11, Zambia

2 DaneJackson GOPOTY 2021

Whitewater Awards: Tell us about this image.. what inspired you to get this shot?
Dane Jackson: The paddle selfie can get some bangers sometimes, but I had always wanted to get to the tube wave with a GoPro and try to get the best shots possible, since no one has been there since GoPro’s have become what they are now.

WA: Where are you?
DJ: I’m at rapid #11 on the Zambezi at high flows.

WA: Do you use a tether or float device for your camera on end of your paddle?
DJ:  It’s not the worst idea to use a tether or floaty when using it on the paddle since it’s one of the easier places to knock a camera off. I don’t much since I like not having anything else in frame.

WA: Do you mostly use the app to edit or on your computer?
DJ: The app can be useful, I also use Lightroom on my phone a lot. But if it’s something worth the extra time I’ll put it on my computer.

WA: What is your routine for using your clips from the day? Do you pull your select clips immediately and save them or do you save them all quickly and pull clips later?
DJ: I will drop everything on my hard drive then sort out the selects later. Sometimes it takes a hot minute when you shoot thousands of photos with the GoPro but then sometimes you end up with bangers, often when you don’t expect. 

WA: What is your method to store clips on a trip?
DJ: I take my computer and hard drive and drop everything on there. Even if it’s a long day of shooting I will drop everything on and keep it because you might not realize what might come in handy in the future.

WA: What is the best way you tell if your GoPro is on above a big drop and you don’t want to take it off and check?
DJ: I’m often paranoid and will triple check by taking the helmet off. But a good last second check is always just checking the reflection on the paddle to see if the red light is on, use that quite often.

WA: What’s your favorite feature about the 9? What do you think is the biggest upgrade from the 8 to the 9.
DJ: The front screen has been nice for shooting stuff facing you whether photos or video because you can see what you have in frame and what the lighting is like. The biggest thing for me is that this is the biggest jump in photo quality I have seen in a GoPro in a very long time. It’s the first one in a while where I notice a big difference in quality of photo when using an older one, I love the photo quality in this camera.

WA: How frequently do you lose GoPro’s? 
DJ: Not as often as you would expect, I have lost 3 in the last year which seems like a lot but to be fair one was while taking it off my helmet to take a selfie, beater. The most recent was today knocking one off my bow while doing a Cobra Flip on Spirit. 

WA: Do you use a GoPro on a drone? How often do you use that set up to scout? 
DJ: I haven’t done that really since switching to DJI but they are still used quite a bit on FPV. Though I think it would be nice to have a GoPro on a drone facing the other way so you get both angles at the same time.

WA: When was a time your GoPro died or you forgot to turn in on when you really wanted a shot?
DJ: Because I am paranoid and always try to make sure it’s on, I don’t really forget to have it on during a big moment. Although for some reason last year it decided to stop recording randomly at the lip of Narnia (not even because of the battery), which was the 118 footer I was first descending, still pretty sad about that one.



• RUNNER UP •

Carson Lindsay

Rider | Alec Voorhees
Feature | Bear Trap, USA

CarsonLindsay GOPOTY 2021

Whitewater Awards: Tell us about this image.. what inspired you to get this shot?
Carson Lindsay: I had really been wanting to shoot Bear Trap and capture someone soaring off the epic flake but knew I didn’t have a wide enough angle on my camera so out came the GoPro! 

WA: Where are you?
CL: This is a rapid called Bear Trap on one of my favorite sections of river in the whole world, Fantasy Falls of the North Fork Mokelumne on Washoe land. 

WA: Do you mostly use the app to edit or on your computer?
CL: I try to keep my media organized and that tends to be just dumping it all on the computer and using Lightroom to edit photos. 

WA: What is your routine for using your clips from the day?
CL: It really depends on the trip, but if I’m in California, usually I’ll pull a few select clips and edit them in the GoPro app to share or just have on my phone, and I’ll do that right after the trip. When I get to a computer, I’ll make sure I take all the media off the card and organize it on to a hard drive and I find that process is a lot faster if you put the card in the computer. On a longer trip, I’ll usually bring extra cards to swap out if I run out of space and I’ve always brought my computer and a hard drive for traveling internationally. It’s just so much easier to put the media where I want it as soon as I can.

WA: What is the best way to tell if your GoPro is on above a big drop/rapid and you don’t want to take it off and check?
CL: The best way that I’ve found, especially with any carbon paddle, is to use your blade like a mirror and try to see the screen of the GoPro in the reflection! It’s hard in some light, but it works really well! 

WA: How frequently do you lose GoPros?
CL: Somehow I’ve only lost one over the last 10 or so years that I’ve had one?? 

WA: When was a time your GoPro died or you forgot to turn it on when you really wanted a shot?
CL: Oh man…so many times! I flew all the way out to Green Race and forgot my batteries before. On that same trip I found a battery to borrow and proceeded to break my mount, so I only have a few shots from more than a week of paddling in North Carolina… 



• THIRD PLACE •

Breiner Matiz

Rider | Santiago Sandoval
Feature | Salto Puma, Chile

BreineMatiz GOPOTY 2021

Whitewater Awards: Tell us about this image.. what inspired you to get this shot?
Breiner Matiz: This place is magical and inspires you to take so many photos from different angles that surely its beauty will make it look very good.

WA: Where are you?
BM: Chile. The river is one of the best rivers where you are in the middle of nature millenary forests, in turquoise waters, where you can find rapids of all the difficulties that a kayaker looks for.

WA: Do you use a tether or float device for your camera on end of your paddle?
BM: I only use a GoPro mount for required moments on my paddle.

WA: Do you mostly use the app to edit or on your computer?
BM: Sometimes I use the application to edit on the computer.

WA: What is your routine for using your clips from the day?
BM: My routine to extract the shots of the day is to remove the memory card, place it in the computer, select the best shots and share them. 

WA: What is the best way you tell if your GoPro is on above a big drop / rapid and you don’t want to take it off and check?
BM: My best way to know that my camera is on without having to stop to take off my helmet is by listening to a small sound when starting, and the sounds when stopping.

WA: How frequently do you lose GoPro’s?
BM: I have not lost many GoPros, thanks to the system I have to secure it.


Whitewater Awards

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