Stunning image of the Seven Sisters by Norfolk photographer Emily Buck is winner of My Perspective 2018

Emily Buck has been announced as the overall winner of the Down’s Syndrome Association’s (DSA) international photographic competition, My Perspective 2018.

Emily said of her winning image, Seven Sisters: “I like the contrast between the blue sky and the white cliffs and the different shapes of the beach and sea.”

Emily also won the competition in 2016.

In joint second place were Christopher Diedo, with his moving image Prayer cards:

Chris said: “My grandma read from these prayers every day. After she died my mum carried on reading them.”

…and Yasaman Ran Balouch’s joyful picture Spring Has Arrived!

Yasaman, who is from Iran, said:
“I love spring because trees are woken up with Sun rays coming at them. Spring is also my dear Mom’s birthday, and because of Nowruz (Persian New Year arriving on Vernal Equinox) everybody is happy and in a celebratory mood! I hear birds singing and I see friendship in peace in people’s faces.”

The Stephen Thomas Award was presented to Giuseppe Caccamese from Italy for his beautiful picture Sila Mountains.

Giuseppe’s image was taken on a camping holiday in the Sila Mountains in Calabria where he captured this charming shot of a cloud that looked like a heart. Giuseppe was inspired to write a poem by this photo.

Giuseppe was presented with his award by Stephen’s brother Paul. This is the third time My Perspective has included the Stephen Thomas Award which was created in 2016 to honour Stephen Thomas’ life. The prize enables one of the shortlisted international photographers to travel to the ceremony.

Actor (and Patron of the DSA) Peter Davison presented the finalists and winners with their photographs and certificates. Last year’s winner, Oliver Hellowell, was unable to attend but sent an inspiring and encouraging message to all the photographers:

“Tell everyone – well done with your pictures and keep doing it, keep going out there…Just do it!!”

The hosts of this year’s award event, Rabobank International UK, are partners with the DSA’s WorkFit programme. WorkFit turns the ‘supported employment’ concept on its head, working with employers and candidates to find meaningful workplace roles that progress employees towards new outcomes, through training, confidence building and skills development.

Rabobank employee Shomari gave an inspiring talk about his role in the organisation, what he enjoys about working and his journey to work.

Staff at Rabobank had the opportunity to view the shortlisted photos ahead of the ceremony and had voted for their favourites. The joint winners of the Rabobank vote were David Kenward with his image Sleeping Beauty and Pascale Tuoko with her image Abstract in blue. In second place was Iranian photographer Alireza Babaei with his image The Mirror.

We’re indebted to Rabobank for their generosity in hosting this year’s award event in their stunning Thames-side London office.

We would also like to thank Olympus, SVS, and Nitecrest for their support.

The runners up in the competition are:

  • Natalie Stevanus (Canada)
  • David Kenward (UK)
  • Stephen Lucas (UK)
  • Samuel Doran (UK)
  • Jonathan Grosvenor (UK)
  • Charles King (UK)
  • Vinay Kapoor (UK)
  • Tim Beale (UK)
  • Alexxander Auld (UK)
  • Klay Green (UK)
  • Pascale Tuoko (UK)
    • Gordon Stewart (UK)
    • Alireza Babaei (Iran)
    • Sammy Wright (UK)
    • Nima Asnadimoghadam (Iran)
    • Kathryn York (UK)
    • Massoumeh Dabiriaghdam (Iran)
    • Frantzeska Douka (Greece)
    • Keziah Glenane (Australia)
    • Kosmas Karikas (Greece)
    • Ali Zarei (Iran)

You can view all the shortlisted photographs on our website.

The competition is open to people with Down’s syndrome across the world and this year 47 out of the 95 entrants came from outside the UK, with photographs sent from Iran, Canada, USA, Australia and Greece.

In years gone by, people with Down’s syndrome were photographed as exhibits; the viewer was not supposed to see the person, just the difference. The Down’s Syndrome Association’s My Perspective competition turns the camera around and gives people with Down’s syndrome the chance to show the world from their point of view.