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16 July 2018

Photography student celebrates completing degree and winning prestigious competition

A talented Wiltshire College student has completed his degree on a high after winning a prestigious photography competition.

Stuart Bridewell is delighted to have won the British Institute of Professional Photographers Student Open Awards for his series of five photographs he took in Iceland during his time on the BA Photography course at the Salisbury campus, which is validated by Bournemouth University.

The 54-year-old from Potterne said it was a good end to his time at the College, also receiving the news he had achieved a first class degree with Honours and letter of commendation from the university and made the finals of another national competition.

Stuart said: “I was happy to find out that I had been shortlisted for both that and the Association of Photographers Student Awards so I was really quite surprised to find out that I had won.

“We had our graduate exhibition in London around the same time, where we were situated alongside lots of other universities and when I saw the quality of the other students work from all over the country I was quite amazed that I had reached and won the national awards!”

Stuart was also delighted to have a three-day takeover on the AOPs Instagram page, where he received lots of positive feedback about his photographs, including the five taken in Iceland which included a stunning image of a decaying Dakota.
Stuart decided to study the photography degree after undertaking a few different evening photography courses.

He said: “I got to the point where I was doing a little commercial work photographing people’s weddings and knew that I would like to do it professionally but didn’t know exactly where I was going with it.

“It was when I was at a family wedding that I spoke to someone who had said he had done the degree at College and recommended it to me.

“This course has allowed me to experiment and get creative, get used to studio work and research other photographers and styles.

“It is a safe environment to learn in and I have really enjoyed it.

“Doing my dissertation made me realise that I’ve always thought about what other people think and whether the like it, but I’ve now learned that it’s important for me to do what I like.

“I still like the wedding route and I hope to do more in the future.”