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Jessica Kelly and the future of photography

23 March 2017

She won the Open Award while studying at university back in 2015, now she's graduated we caught up with Jessica to find out what she's been up to.   

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©Jessica Kelly

How did you first get into photography? 

I first started shooting while I was in sixth form studying it as an AS Level. If I'm honest the real reason I decided to get into photography was because I have never been very academic and felt that photography would allow me to explore my creative side and enjoy practical based learning. Little did I know that I would end up absolutely loving it and wanting to do it for the rest of my life! 

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©Jessica Kelly


What are you trying to achieve with your work? How do you want your audience to react? 

Through my work I would like to be able to build a relationship between the subject and the viewer, for a connection to be made through a similarity which the viewer never would of thought they would have with that particular subject. A reaction I would hope to get is intrigue, for them to want to learn more and also take with them a story captured within that shot.


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©Jessica Kelly 


How has your style changed since you began? 

My style has changed dramatically in both subject and style. When I first started out I shot mainly nature and landscapes which were very basic and not very good to be honest. During my time at Uni I gained so much confidence with shooting and realised that my passion lay in photographing people. Although my style has always been very raw I feel that I now focus a lot more on my composition.


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©Jessica Kelly 


Tell us what you've been working on lately 

I am currently working on a series which looks at Young Carers in the U.K. It is a subject that is very close to my heart and that I'm extremely passionate about.


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©Jessica Kelly 


Winning the AOP Open award in 2015 was a brilliant achievement for you, at the time you were in your second year  at uni, what did winning do for you as a photographer? 

Winning the AOP Open award in my second year at university was absolutely incredible. It gave me a huge boost going into my final year and pushed me to shoot even more and to also come out of my comfort zone and to capture subjects that would be more challenging. Following this I was over the moon to find out that my series Boys which I shot in my final year as my Final major project made it as a finalist of the AOP Awards 2016.

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©Jessica Kelly 


What’s next for you? What’s the dream? 

As well as freelancing, I'm using this year to shoot a lot of personal work some of which I will be releasing very soon. Next year I will be completing a Masters in Documentary and Photojournalism which I hope will then lead to a job doing what I love! 

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©Jessica Kelly 


What do you think the photography industry will look like in 10 years? 

Who knows! Technology is constantly changing and improving, and with the way mobile phone cameras are going I'm sure that they will become the popular way amongst professionals to capture their shots which I think that's starting to happen already! \


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©Jessica Kelly 

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