Photography student snaps up award winning results

A Trafford College photography student has been trying out different ways of using the camera from her wheelchair, with award-winning results.

Emma Bristow’s shot of one of the back streets of Manchester went on display at Derby Hall, after wowing the judges of this year’s national Young Advocate photography competition.

It also led to the first year BTEC student receiving the prestigious Creative Arts Student of the Year Award at Trafford College.

The 17-year-old from Urmston said: “The photo was taken on the spur of the moment when we went down that back street trying to find good images when on a field trip. Me and my TA got a bit lost down the back streets in Manchester. I saw this and just thought it's not what you see every day, so I took the photograph.

 “How I take pictures from my chair is quite unelegant, I move my chair into position then I use my mobile phone and held in between my legs. This is how I took the photograph that was exhibited.

Field trips are an integral part of BTEC Photography, which uses classrooms, dark rooms and workshops within multi-million pound Creative Arts block at Altrincham Campus.

“As a wheelchair user, it's nice that the college is a newly built building with accessibility in mind. Also if the lift in the art and design building stops working, it is fixed quickly.”

Every year students are given access to competitions across our range of BTEC, A-Level and apprenticeship pathways as part of their professional development.

The former Flixton Girls School pupil added: “I decided to enter after encouragement from my support worker and tutors, friends and family.”

In the future, Emma would like to become a freelance photographer.

Advising future students, she said: “I would recommend FE to others it is stressful at times but lots of fun. You can get a lot out of it if you are willing to put in the work.

“Research the courses, make sure it’s something you want to do, as it is a long commitment if you are not sure. Try and enjoy it.”