Ely sixth former wins photography competition with black and white print inspired by work of charity that fights child abuse
PUBLISHED: 15:12 11 April 2019
An Ely sixth former beat more than 600 other entrants to win a national student photography competition.
Luna Guo, who studies at King’s Ely Sixth Form, has won the ninth Ilford Photo UK Student Photographer of the Year Competition.
The competition tasked photography students from across the UK with creating a black and white image that reflects an inspiring line from a book, film, poem, quote or song.
Despite going up against more than 630 entries from 40 different schools and colleges, 18-year-old Luna’s print, titled ‘If you don’t help them who will?’ was chosen as the overall winner.
Her image was inspired by the work that the charity Women & Men Against Child Abuse (WMACA) does in South Africa. The organisation fights for the rights of children and to end child abuse.
Luna, who shot on Ilford HP5+ and printed on Ilford Multigrade IV RC Pearl, said: “I wanted to create an image of the situation that people are facing today when they cannot find someone for help or help others.
“The sole figure standing out of the crowd in my photograph represents the many who suffer abuse and violence.
“I had a strong vision of how I wanted the image to look with scale in mind and long shadows.
“I find using the darkroom very therapeutic and rewarding as I am able to work without the safety net of image enhancing software and learning traditional photographic skills.”
Luna now faces the winners and runners-up from the other participating countries to see who will be crowned winner of Ilford Photo International Student Photographer of the Year.
Last year’s competition was won by King’s Ely sixth form student Orla Simpson and Antonio Longo, head of photography at King’s Ely, said: “I’m thrilled for Luna.
“Her win builds on our success which saw Orla Simpson being the UK winner of 2018.
“The competition was set as a live project for GCSE and A Level photography groups in conjunction with their foundation learning where they undertook darkroom practice as part of their course.
“I encourage all students to shoot film and use the darkroom to investigate a range of different processes and materials ranging from Chemigrams to B&W printing.
“I believe that traditional B&W processing and printing are still a valid educational tool and a must for all students to have access to.”
King’s Ely students Orla Simpson, Charlie Watson, Fiona Fung and Ben Clubb have also been shortlisted in this year’s Beyond the Frame photography competition, which is organised by Norwich University of the Arts.
The theme this year was ‘The Nature of Beauty’ and the students will find out if they have progressed over the coming weeks.