Coleg Cambria student Libby Gillard is the winner of this year’s FE Week and Me Photography Competition.

The 19-year-old, who is taking A-levels in psychology, graphic design and photography, was one of 10 entrants shortlisted in the photography student category.

After being told she had won, Libby said: “Oh wow I can’t believe it, it’s amazing, thank you so much. I’m really happy about it, I never expected to get to the top 10 let alone win.

“It is a big shock especially to be chosen from so many entries, it is incredible.”

More than 700 entries flooded in for this year’s competition, in partnership with NCFE, which needed to depict learning environments in the FE and skills sector.

Of her photo, ‘What Lies Beneath’ (pictured), Libby said: “Emotions are often kept underneath the surface but here they are brought above, portraying the many emotions and situations experienced as a student.

“I am passionate about photography and I’m going to study it at Chester University in September and then carry it on and pursue it as a career. My favourite type of photography is macrophotography and portraits hence my entry this year.”

As winner of the competition, Libby will receive a prize of a Nikon D5200 Camera Kit and the opportunity to take part in a work shadowing placement with a professional photographer.

“The camera prize is great and I’m really excited for the work shadowing placement, I’ve not done anything like that before,” she said. “It will be really good to get first hand advice from someone actually doing the job professionally and on a day-to-day basis.”

Shane Mann, managing director of Lsect, which publishes FE Week, was one of the judges. He said: “The quality of entries this year was simply quite stunning, and Libby’s portrait was no exception.

“What I really liked was that it depicted the brief perfectly. It speaks volumes about the different emotions that students experience but are often left hidden. With quality like this it is clear to me that Libby will go on to be a fantastic professional photographer.”


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