Your web browser is out of date. Update your browser for more security, speed and the best experience on this site.
Find out more
We use cookies and similar technologies to optimise your experience when using this site, to help us understand site usage, and to tailor our advertising on third party sites. Read about Cookies and view our Privacy Policy at the bottom of each page on our website at any time.

Contemporary Group Photographic Bursary

Ruralschoolphotonamed
CREDIT: Adrian Hough ARPS

Photographic Bursary for Rural Schools

The Contemporary Photography Group of the Royal Photographic Society is offering a bursary of £1500 to a Rural School, in order to fund ‘A photographic project that conveys the experience of being a school student in a rural environment.’

The Royal Photographic Society (RPS) is one of the world’s oldest photographic societies, founded in 1853 to make the art and science of photography more widely available.  Our mission is to bring inspiration, creativity and connection through photography to people of all ages and backgrounds. Details of our wider opportunities, activities and resources for young photographers are available at https://rps.org/youngphotographers/.

The bursary is open to all schools in the United Kingdom, Channel Islands and The Isle of Man which are located in a settlement with a population of less than ten thousand (or which has been designated as Rural by the relevant Government Legislation) and must be used for work with and by pupils/students under the age of sixteen on 1st September 2023.  It is open to both primary and secondary schools.

The bursary would be paid in full at the beginning of the project, in September 2023 and the project should be completed by the end of March 2024.  Whatever form the project takes it should have a tangible outcome in the form of an exhibition, a book or a Zine.  Any exhibition would need to be in a publicly accessible location and the bursary would be made on the condition that whatever the format of the outcome it can be reported in RPS media and in the press, television and/or radio if opportunity arises.

All schools making an application would need to confirm their rural status (as above).  Applications also need to include details of the year group(s) of the students involved together with their current photographic expertise.  The project could either be a stand-alone project outside school hours or could be used to support an existing area of the curriculum such as Art or the human geography and fieldwork skills sections of Geography.

The successful school would be allocated a member of the Royal Photographic Society who would contact them during the duration of the project and with whom they could discuss ideas and progress.

Contemporary Photography can be defined as “Photography that conveys ideas, stimulates thought and encourages interpretation; photographs ‘about’ rather than ‘of’.

Anyone wanting to explore what is understood by Contemporary Photography in more detail should read ‘Understanding Contemporary Photography’ on the RPS website https://rps.org/news/groups/contemporary/2022/march/understanding-contemporary-photography  and/or look at the work of a well-known Contemporary Photographer such as Martin Parr Hon FRPS here https://www.martinparr.com.   Further ideas for working with children and young people are available on websites such as https://sharpshotsphotoclub.co.uk/.

Terms

  1. The Contemporary Photography Special Interest Group of The Royal Photographic Society wishes to award a single bursary of £1500 to support a photographic project that conveys the experience of being a school student in a rural environment.
  2. Applications are invited from any school in the United Kingdom, Isle of Man and Channel Islands that is situated in a settlement with a population of under ten thousand people (or which has been designated as Rural by the relevant Government Legislation) and educates students/pupils under the age of sixteen.
  3. The bursary will be made to the school that, in the opinion of the assessment panel appointed by the Contemporary Group Committee, shows the clearest vision for the completion of a successful project which will also develop the photographic skills of the students/pupils involved. The assessment panel may decide to produce a short-list of no more than four schools and to ask these schools to expand the description of their proposed project.
  4. The project could cover the experience of being a school pupil or student in a rural environment in general or it could focus on one or more specific aspects of that experience, such as the journey to and from school.
  5. The successful school would need to provide a named contact who would be responsible for the local supervision of the project.
  6. The project must result in a tangible outcome in the form of an exhibition, a book or a Zine. Any exhibition would need to be held in a publicly accessible location.   Work must be completed by 31st March 2024 although any exhibition and/or publicity can be held after that date.
  7. The bursary would be made on the condition that whatever the format of the outcome it can be reported in RPS media and in press, television and/or radio if the opportunity arises.
  8. The school would be responsible for obtaining the necessary permissions for the recording and reproduction of any images of any person under the age of eighteen included in the project. An example “model release” is available at https://rps.org/resources/#MO, an editable Word document https://rps.org/media/ipgo0mcb/rps-model-release-form-word-document.docx
  9. The work must be produced solely by the pupils/students involved, all of whom must be under the age of sixteen on 1st September 2023. Guidance and supervision by staff or volunteers is permitted as appropriate to the ages of the students/pupils involved.
  10. Images can be taken using any form of equipment, for example digital or analogue cameras, smart phones, tablets, etc. We are more interested in outcomes rather than technology.
  11. The RPS Contemporary Photography Special Interest Group Committee will support the successful school through the provision of a named member of the Group to provide advice on Contemporary Photography and the presentation of the project.
  12. The closing date for applications is 21st April and any request for additional information from schools with shortlisted projects will be made by 12th May. The successful school will be informed of the outcome no later than 9th June.
  13. The application must be made using the PDF form. (Note: Tools like Adobe Acrobat Reader allow text to be directly inserted in the form.)

Click for the application form --> CG Bursary 2023 <-- click for the application form