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With just weeks until entries close, the people of Sunderland are urged to put their city in the frame by submitting their photos and films for the North East’s biggest photo and film competition, the Port of Tyne’s Reflect Awards.


The competition is open to amateurs and professionals alike, with categories including North East Life, North East Nature, North East People and North East Film, plus a special category of Reflect Photo and Film Youth to encourage young people aged 16 and under to enter.

The winner of each category collects £350 and will also see their work exhibited in a tour of leading regional galleries. The three runners-up in each category will receive a £100 prize.

Joining the judging panel this year is celebrated Sunderland-born author, playwright and broadcaster Terry Deary, the creator of the Horrible Histories series, and one of the most-borrowed authors in British libraries. Terry will be judging the 16-and-under photo and film category.

“I want to see young talent in the North-East nourished and encouraged. This competition is a great platform for young people to show what they can do,” said Terry Deary.

Keen photographer and former Sunderland Echo editor Rob Lawson said: “I have been following Reflect on Twitter and Instagram and would urge budding photographers and professionals to enter what are the most prestigious and recognisable photographic awards in the region. Sunderland can be very photogenic thanks to landmarks such as the piers, Penshaw Monument and other iconic buildings and areas. It would be great to see a Sunderland photographer and some Sunderland images among the winners.”

Another Reflect fan is Sunderland taxi driver Dean Matthews who heard about the competition via social media and is one of the people entering this year: “Anything that encourages people to promote Sunderland by picking up a camera and having a go at taking pictures gets my vote.

“I’m not a professional; my camera was on auto setting for years. I taught myself by playing about with the settings, reading articles, and just taking lots of pictures. I would encourage everyone to get their entries in and let’s do Sunderland proud.”

Sunderland-born photographer Paul Swinney, a finalist in the 2007 Urban Photographer of the Year competition and in the Nikon UK Best Photographer 2009 competition, is another one of this year’s entrants.

He believes Reflect has a very important role to play in promoting the North East: “Reflect is a great way to celebrate the best of Sunderland and the North East. Although I now live in London, much of my photography remains focused on Sunderland. I've had many comments from people who've seen my work that they didn’t even know Sunderland was on the coast.

“I would love to see the people of Sunderland really getting behind the competition and submitting their entries,” said Paul Swinney.

For more details about how to enter the Reflect Awards and to view the photo gallery, visit Entries close on 19 September 2014.


For further information please contact:

Lisa Donohoe, Public Relations Manager

Tel: +44 (0) 191 455 2671 Mobile: +44 (0)79123 90777

E: Twitter: @Port_of_Tyne

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