From education to employment

Students photograph British Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association athletes

Photography students at Bath College have started work with the British Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association on a new project offering them unique access to two of the world’s fastest sports.

Four students have been chosen to photograph the national team, who started training at the University of Bath in May.

They are photographing the training ground, meeting athletes, capturing the action on the track, and sitting in on fitness training sessions.

Their work will count towards an end of year assessment at Bath College and could be used by the team on marketing and promotion materials.

Photography student Georgia Puckett has been photographing the team, along with students Kate Dickinson, Kate Hunter and Will Tahta.

The 16-year-old, who is a big sports fan, said: “The first time we met them and just watched them practice for a bit before we started.

“When we met up the second time, the team had been looking at our photos and some of the athletes asked if we could take portraits.

“It’s something I’ve always had a big interest in. I want to work with teams and clubs as a photographer in the future, so to get this opportunity is fantastic.

“I enjoy action photography. You’re changing your camera settings all the time, it’s quite difficult but I’m enjoying it.”

Students are working to produce high quality images that can be used for the team’s Twitter and Facebook accounts, as well as for banners, flyers and individual athlete websites.

The new partnership between Bath College and the British Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association could lead to further opportunities, such as a student travelling out with the team to photograph athletes training on ice.

In February, athletes took part in the in 2016 World Championships in Innsbruck and the Winter Youth Olympics in Lillehammer, with GB winning medals in both bobsleigh and skeleton in the latter.

It’s possible the group’s work could document the early careers of future Olympic medallists, following in the steps of Amy Williams and Lizzy Yarnold.

David Merriman, Head of Art and Design at Bath College, is looking forward to seeing the students’ finished work.

He said: “I’m really pleased that the photography students in our department continue to have the opportunity to broaden their horizons and work on live briefs.

“This venture is particularly exciting as it will provide them with an opportunity to explore some dynamism in their photography and widen their experience of teamwork and travel.

“Our photography tutors will be working with the individual students selected, giving them advice about how to tackle this subject matter.”

Bath College Principal Matt Atkinson said: “At Bath College we have a significant focus on developing the employability skills of our students and this fantastic partnership with the British Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association will enable our photographers to develop the skills they need to thrive as professionals.”

Richard Parker, CEO of the British Bobsleigh & Skeleton Association, added: “We are delighted to team up with Bath College for what should be an exciting project for both parties.

“We are keen to build links with local businesses and institutions and I’m very pleased that we can offer students at Bath College the opportunity to photograph our elite sportsmen and women on their journey to the next Winter Olympics in Pyeonchang in 2018.

“Our sports lend themselves to fantastic action imagery and we hope that the students will learn a lot from this unique experience.”

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