From education to employment

Cardiff and Vale College Photography student Steven invited to exhibit his work

During a recent visit to Cardiff and Vale College’s Arts Academy, artist and photographer Jon Pountney was so impressed by the work of Photography learner Steven Pitten that he invited him to join an exhibition he was organising.

The exhibition, Spirit of Place, took place in Abertridwr Community Centre during February and featured Stevens photographs of his home town of Senghenydd and the surrounding areas.

“I was really happy when Jon Pountney invited me to be part of the Spirit of Place exhibition,” Steven said. “It made me realise that what I was doing was more than just taking pretty pictures of people in the valley.

“It was really fun talking to people at the exhibition and hearing people’s thoughts about the exhibition as a whole.”

Steven, who wants to pursue a career as a nature photographer, enjoys studying AT CAVC.

“I am loving being on the CAVC Photography course,” he said. “I’ve made a lot of great friends, Dave and Paul are amazing lecturers and the projects are challenging but also inspiring.

“I enjoy being around a lot of like-minded people. There is a lot of talented people on the course with me who deserve recognition as well and it is great working together on projects even though the projects are individual.”

But one moment has made his time at the College an experience unlike any other.

“I think the most stand out moment I have had on the course is when Jon Pountney came in to do a talk,” Steven explained. “If that never happened, I don’t think I would be where I am today.

“Not only has he offered me opportunities, he has also influenced my photographic style significantly and helped me realise a lot about what I can do to improve myself as a photographer, as well as developing a greater connection with my local area.

“I think the exhibition will definitely help in the future. It introduced a lot of people to my work and even if the people who viewed my work don’t follow my social media or decide to hire me as a photographer, I have developed a positive reputation as a photographer in the local valley and people now know who I am.”

Cardiff and Vale College Principal Sharon James-Evans said:

“Well done Steven! Being invited to exhibit alongside a recognised artist while still studying is a fantastic achievement.

“And thank you to Jon Pountney. At CAVC we like to offer experiences that are real and not just realistic, and giving one of our learners the opportunity to experience the realities of exhibiting their work is exactly the sort of taste of the world of work for an artist that will help him as he pursues his career.”

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