Edinburgh College photography students named UK’s best
Edinburgh College has scooped all the top prizes at the British Institute of Professional Photography’s (BIPP) UK Student Awards, beating off competition from the country’s universities and colleges. Two current students and a recent graduate were named the country’s best student photographers, taking first place in the three categories.
BA Professional Photography student Kinga Kocimska won the BIPP National Student of the Year Award, recent BA graduate Jamie Mellor won the Student Open Award for students who are not BIPP members and fellow BA student Sandra Vijandi won the BIPP College Award.
Sandra was also the runner up for the Student of the Year Award and another student, Antonio Castro, came second in the Student Open. Three others were also highly commended in the categories.
Edinburgh College curriculum manager for broadcast media and photography Marjory Crooks said: “We’re delighted that the emerging photography students from Edinburgh College are winning such prestigious awards in the industry. Their future commissions and careers will be greatly enhanced by this as they’re already building fantastic profiles while they’re studying with us.”
Kinga’s winning entry in this year’s UK-wide competition consisted of five images from her second-year portfolio, ‘Deceptive Mind’, which showcased her surreal, witty approach to her photography as well as her technical skill (above).
Sandra took her win and runner-up position for her portfolios ‘Unexpected Journeys’ and ‘Glass Houses’, which demonstrated her flair for fashion photography, featuring stylised, heavily art-directed images (below).
Kinga said: “I did not expect such an amazing distinction and I’m very pleased that the time and effort I have invested in learning new skills have already started yielding such good results. I’m really grateful for the tuition and development opportunities I have received at Edinburgh College. This award has motivated me even more to continue improving my skills and working hard to gain more experience as a photographer. After all, the biggest challenge of making my way into the photographic industry is still ahead of me.”
These awards continue a winning streak for the college’s photography students that includes five years of multiple successes at the BIPP Scottish Region Image Awards, culminating in 30 awards this year including Student Photographer of the Year and Professional Photographer of the Year. Former student Lee Howell was also runner up in last year’s BIPP Student of the Year Award.
Photography lecturer Jon Lee added: “We’ve been overwhelmed in recent years with the talent of our students and I’m extremely pleased they’re continuing to do so well in these awards. The achievement is down to the hard work of our students and also our staff, who come from a range of commercial photography backgrounds. Many of our part-time staff also still work in the industry, which means our students gain that essential insight into developments in the professional word and ensures they’re prepared when they enter it.”
The college’s BA Professional Photography course currently has 24 students, the HND Professional Photography 1 has 38 and the HND Professional Photography 2 has 34.