Postgraduate’s evocative image of an ancient tree wins photography competition

February 2015

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(NOTE: This is an archived press release.)

A Writtle College postgraduate has won first place in a photography competition run by the Forest Stewardship Council.

Marion Sidebottom, who is an MA by Dissertation in Art and Design student at Writtle School of Design, took a stunning black and white image of an ancient hornbeam tree in Hatfield Forest.

The photograph has now been named as the winner of the Terrific Trees category and has gone through to the final shortlist for the 2014 FSC UK Photography Competition, which is decided by a public vote on Facebook.

Marion, who lives in Chelmsford, said: “Photographing trees has become a passion and obsession in the last few years. I seek out unusual tree specimens and aim to capture their character and essence. I am thrilled to win this stage of the award and to have the chance of becoming the People's Choice. I extend a thank you to everyone who supports me in this.”

Marion graduated with a BSc degree from Writtle College in 1995 and, after a change in direction, returned in 2013 to study a Foundation Diploma in Art and Design, gaining a Distinction. She is about to submit her MA dissertation entitled The Tree in Photographs: What are the key artistic influences and personal motivations of 21st Century tree photographers?

Her final exhibition for her MA was an installation of trees and photographs of 900-year-old dead oaks in a remote field near marshland in Mundon, Essex. She researched their history and unearthed the link between marshland and salt, and how it probably contributed to their demise.

Voting for the photography prize is open until the end of February (00:01 on 1st March 2015). The winner of the People’s Choice will be awarded expert photography tuition with Edward Parker and a Go Ape Family ticket.

Vote for Marion’s work by visiting: