Results for the 2015 Creative Competition: Written and Photography

Check out the results for 2015’s Creative Competition!

Many thanks to all of you and our three judges for taking time out for the competition!

Our judges for these categories were:

Dr Paul Batchelor for the Written Category, poet and lecturer at our own English department

John Erwin for the Photography Category, professional photography based in Durham who can be contacted at

The artwork results will be published tomorrow! (Tuesday 17th)

The winning entries will be published individually next term, but for now here are the results, and some comments from our judges:

Written Category

1st Place: Cleaner by Cressida Peever

2nd Place: Horseplay on Bruhl Street by J. Lessing

3rd Place: Mira, Mira by Kimberley Anderson

Dr Batchelor says:

It was very difficult to decide between these three. They are so different, and each is very strong in its own way.

These entries deserve a shout-out and I would like to commend them too:

‘Fishing’ by Katja Garson

‘China Doll’ by Sophie Ngan

‘The End’ by Yashodhara Trivedi

Photography category

1st Place: Come Fly with me by Peter Swan

Fantastic action shot very well composed. No distractions around the image just the rider and the bike.Highly detailed, you can see all the creases in the riders jacket and all of the elements of the machine.

I would be certain Peter took more shots from this event but a crucial part of the photography process is editing those out and selecting “The Shot”. Hard to imagine what could have been more dramatic than this one. There is nothing you would want to add in or take out of the picture. Congratulations Peter.

2nd Place: Happy by Claire Ewbank

At first this image looks straight forward, but there are three layers here, and I love to see images with layers to them. My eye is first drawn to the sign, then the shopkeeper, then the background.

Layers within an image are not easy to draw together coherently. It would be easy to get this composition wrong. If the shopkeeper was in any other position, even slightly, it would not have worked as well.

He could have had a big cheesy smile on his face, but that would have ruined the shot. So he lets the sign say something for him, without a smile, and I believe that he probably is happy. Let’s hope so.

So I have chosen this picture because it would have been easy to get it wrong. Instead the photographer got it right and has composed very well .

All of the elements within the picture sit comfortably with each other and Claire captured exactly the right expression from her subject.

3rd Place: Untitled by Matt Hoser

(image is a black-and-white portrait of a man’s face)

In photography I often like to compare it to music. We all have different tastes, it is a purely personal thing and my taste in music is certainly not better than someone elses music its just what I like. So although I specialise in landscape work I love many other styles of photography such as artistic. This is one such example.

Here the photographer has thought about how to make this shot different from being just a straight portrait shot. Another image has been included but it has to be done carefully as it can easily draw focus away from the subject. Making it black and white has also helped to keep it less distracting than in colour and for me having added a layer of texture into the picture it has given it more visual strength.

John also says:

Well done to all the winners and there were many other shots of merit that I couldn’t pick but which were very good images.

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