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29th July 2021

James Farmer, an A-level Photography student at St Brendan’s Sixth Form College, is celebrating a big win after his photo was awarded first place in a photography competition run by Bristol Education Partnership in collaboration with Bristol Photo Festival and the Soil Association.

This year’s theme was “Growing Spaces”, where the aim was to showcase and celebrate the natural, growing world of flowers, vegetables, weeds, plants, trees – and even people. The winning entry captures gravestones covered in ivy at Arnos Vale cemetery. James was able to use the skills that he learned during his Photography A-level to connect to the theme, highlighting the contrasting colours and textures found in the cemetery.

James says, “For a photo competition about 'Growing Spaces', including a picture of a grave was not the obvious choice. But, I loved the way the ivory and greenery have grown onto and around the gravestones.”

“I feel that this photo has a lot of symbolism,” he continues. “It highlights the passage of time by using ivy that has grown over graves dug a long time ago. The way that the two graves tilt towards each other is another key feature of this image. It gives the impression of closeness even after death.”

James’s winning photo featured on the Bristol Photo Festival’s online exhibition space throughout July.