Young photographers at West Suffolk College reach final of competition
Three young photographers reached the final of a top competition for their work exploring ‘the nature of beauty’.
West Suffolk College students Evan Peck, 19, of Bury St Edmunds, Tegan Barker and Isabelle Murrell saw their work celebrated at the ‘Beyond The Frame’ contest run by the BA (Hons) Photography course at Norwich University of the Arts in association with Canon.
It attracted more than 500 images from 200 photographers with only 36 reaching the final including the trio’s work, which was exhibited at the university’s East Gallery.
The competition aims to encourage all students at further education level to develop their craft and showcase their talent and this year’s theme, ‘the nature of beauty’, offered opportunities from portraiture to fashion, social commentary and environmental images.
Tegan, 18, of Bury St Edmunds, said: “When I found out my work had been chosen out of over 500 entries, I was so shocked but very happy.
“Looking around the exhibition it was overwhelming to see my work amongst so many amazing images.
“The message behind my image was that beauty isn’t just skin deep.”
Isabelle, 17, of Stowmarket, said: “Being a finalist in the Beyond the Frame competition was an amazing opportunity and I’m extremely grateful.
“It was almost surreal to see my work in an exhibition so early on in my journey.”
As finalists, they were invited to the awards night, which involved a private viewing of their work and they met the judging panel of Kerry Curl, Dean Chalkley and BBC Look East’s Mike Higgins.
Sophie Lachowycz, course director for Fashion Media and Promotion at West Suffolk College, said: “Participating in live competition briefs is an integral part of fashion media and promotion, to ensure our students are beginning to engage with the industry even whilst studying at this level. Photography is a key element of our course, with an emphasis on fashion and beauty; the ‘nature of beauty’ theme was well fitting.
“Our students responded to this in many ways, challenging stereotypes of beauty and what we are accustomed to seeing in the media.
“We are really proud that three students were chosen as finalists and had their work exhibited in a professional gallery space at Norwich University of the Arts.
“Attending the private view gave them chance to meet the judges in person, to interact with industry professionals and to see their work displayed in context.
“This is a brilliant addition to their CVs, alongside a confidence boost for them to continue progressing at a high standard.”