William Pearce, who studies BA (Hons) Photography at UCA Farnham, appeared on Show me the Monet in July where he not only received the backing of all three critics but was one of a select number of aspiring artists to sell their work.
The 21-year-old from Hemsby in Norfolk, said: “I couldn’t believe that out of 3,000 entrants I was one of only 12 artists to sell their work on the show.
“I was fully expecting to have to wrap the picture up and take it back home so I’m still very excited by it all.”
William has been exploring the relationship between the natural and man-made during his second year at UCA and submitted a landscape photograph entitled Access. William said: “Our course leader sent out an email telling us about the show. I thought I’d give it a go as it sounded like a good way to get my work seen by a wider audience but I didn’t really expect to hear anything from them again.
“As part of the show, I had to pitch the artwork to the Hanging Committee – I was very nervous at the thought of three influential members of the art world criticising my work and my Mum crying behind me certainly didn’t help my nerves – but thankfully it went really well.
“The whole experience was a big confidence boost for me – it’s hard to tell what people think about your work normally so to have this sort of feedback from critics and dealers, as well as selling my work at the exhibition, has spurred me on to continue making the photography that I enjoy.”
Stephen Bull, BA (Hons) Photography course leader, said: “Everyone at UCA is really proud of William.
“His achievement is particularly impressive as he wasn’t even half-way through his degree when he created the piece. I hope this encourages William and his fellow students at UCA to push themselves and be brave in their work.”
Max Hurn, a first year BA (Hons) Photography student also featured in the series but did not make it past the judges.