one planet city

I’m a Brighton based photographer specialising in portraits, events and marketing photography. However, in my free time I love to work on documentary photography projects too, so when I saw there was a documentary photography competition running in Brighton, I jumped at the chance to enter. 

The theme for the One Planet City photography competition was sustainability, and it was organised by two Brighton based social enterprises; Bioregional and FotoDocument. Entrants were invited to submit their sustainability photographs of the city in one or more of ten categories, which included Health & Happiness, Sustainable Materials and Sustainable Transport.

The submissions were judged by a panel of industry professionals including: Nina Emett (Director, FotoDocument), Mariama Attah (Photoworks), Anthony Probert (Bioregional), Simon Roberts (Photographer), Melanie Friend (Photographer) and Murray Ballard (Photographer).

I was delighted to discover that my photographs were awarded first prizes in both the Zero Waste and Land Use & Wildlife categories!  Both entries were taken specifically for the competition, so I thought it would be a good opportunity to tell the story behind the pictures.

My winning entry in the Zero Waste category features Dennis Muir of Gloprint; a Brighton based business which refurbishes and resells used printers, thereby preventing them from ending up in landfill.

Dennis and I met at the Brighton Chamber of Commerce Ride the Wave event for start ups. Our group of six at the event has since become a mini networking and support group – we meet to share ideas and help each other with the challenges of running a new business.

I really liked the sustainability angle of Dennis’s business, so when I came to plan my competition entries he sprang to mind. In order to document his work I arranged to photograph him on site at a customer's premises in London Road in Brighton where he was servicing their printer.  

For my winning entry in the Land Use & Wildlife category I contacted Stanmer Park apiary and arranged to visit them to photograph a beginners' bee keeping workshop. I support local and organic bee keeping where the welfare of the bees is paramount (especially as I eat a lot of honey!). The land is used for a range of educational purposes, being also very close to the University of Sussex campus. 

It was the first time that the hives had been opened since the winter. It was also my first experience of being in such close proximity to a lot of bees! I wore a full bee suit including mesh helmet and thick gloves, so it was a challenge to use the camera. But it was a really enjoyable experience which has opened my eyes to the wonderful world of bee keeping.

It’s fantastic to have been recognised by industry professionals, especially with so many great entries from some wonderful photographers! You can see all the other winning entries here.