The Undergraduate Photography Contest & Results

percy byron

The Undergraduate Photography Contest

Undergraduate students were invited to send us a digital photograph that they think best visualises the theme of friendship. Photographs may be figurative or abstract, black-and-white or colour. Undergraduate and postgraduate students can vote for their favourite photograph that represents friendship (a link to the doodle poll is emailed to students).

Click on each title to see full size picture

the keble ducks

A.    The Keble Ducks

The ducks and ducklings are very popular around Keble, and are always seen together. Keble students love feeding the ducks and taking photos of them, so while they seem to embody friendship amongst themselves, they are also a talking point within the friendly Keble community too.


B.    Urafiki

This photo was taken in the Serengeti wildlife concession just as the heat of the day was passing. We had searched for this pride of around fifteen lions all morning and finally tracked them down all piled up on top of each other having a nap under a dead tree. They had obviously made a kill that afternoon as they were practically comatose and had huge bellies, not a single one of them was moving around, even the cubs. The whole scene just evoked contentedness and peace. This little cub had its eyes closed for a while as we sat there in the jeep at a distance but it opened them briefly, checked us out, decided we weren't worth any more attention, and reached for the nearest paw to hold - and it was at that moment I snapped this.

hidden smile

C.      Hidden Smile

This was taken by myself at Southbank with my friend Yinka. I live very close by so I tend to always be there with my friends. I have actually worked and performed at the Southbank Centre with Yinka, so the place means a lot to us. On this day, we had just finished working on an a music event for kids in the Queen Elizabeth Hall. Right outside of there is a water fountain, which they only turn on during hot summer days. As you can see in the background, there are many kids playing and having fun – but that didn’t stop us! We were still kids at heart, I guess. I honestly love the symmetry of this photo; and the way the splashes of the water appear so clearly. The side view of the London Eye contextualises it well too. I told Yinka to go in to the water. I took the photo right when he turned around, just missing it all soak his entire body. The candidness of it is telling, and that is why I submitted it as an entry. You can see his smile, which is slightly hidden by the splashes of the fountain. The rawness and realness of friendship is truly represented here.

ladies who lunch

D.      Ladies Who Lunch

This was taken in my Sixth Form’s Canteen. Here we have Rosa and Abby playfully staring with a smirk, and Alina covering her laugh with her hand on the far left. These are my friends who I did a lot of drama and acting with at school, so I love how this captures that perfectly with them jokingly playing for the camera. What was great about Sixth form is that you always saw someone you knew in the Canteen, even if you came late. Though I was on another table, I saw my girls, and could even take a photo of them. In some ways friendship is like that, you can be far away from someone but still be able to maintain a loving relationship with them. The framing of the photo is quite cool, even better as it was all by chance. I think the three hidden heads of the male teachers nicely contrasts the visible heads of my three female friends, who all have their hand by their mouth. Plus, the boy standing between Rosa and Abby adds a nice counterbalance to everyone else in the photo – myself included – who is sitting down. After this was taken we spoke a lot, talking across the room. Not only does this photo represent friendship, but it reminds me of the bustling and jovial life we had in Sixth Form.

E.       Untitled


Undergraduate Photography Contest Results

We have the results and are pleased to announce the two winners for the Undergraduate Photography Contest:

Student Poll with 32% of the vote:

Darcy Dixon, Hidden Smile

Comments received:

“Nicely composed, lovely smile, and just a hint of enigma.”; “I like the water”.

Faculty Panel:

Alex Omidvar, Untitled

Judges comment:

The photograph depicts two young friends sitting together on a rocky beach and looking out onto the vast ocean. The ocean may symbolise ideas such as the oblivion from which long-forgotten memories of the past may be retrieved or the creative void from which the vagarious path of the future will spring forth. But the direction of time at which these two friends gaze is not clear, and that gap of ambiguity is where the photograph’s strength is most felt.

We do not know who these two friends are; all that we see are the back of their heads. They are anonymous but their anonymity allows the viewer to intercede and infuse the image with his or her own desires. As a result, the photographic image stands for something different and personal to each viewer who engages with it. The picture may evolve into a personal reminiscence of times shared with my friend, or perhaps imaginings of a future that holds my friend and me together, conquering the unknown throughout the glorious years to come.

CONGRATULATIONS to both Darcy and Alex, and a big THANK YOU to all the participants who submitted a photo to the contest!! All the photos were lovely and all of them received great comments and praise.

Darcy and Alex each win a book worth £20 of their choice.

Many thanks again to everyone who entered photos and voted in the UG Photography Contest. I hope you had as much fun as we did!

Download the results here



Here, a pleasant addition to the theme of "friendship" (staff submission)

Click on the title to see full size picture



lisa friendship