Surrey Life photography competition for kids and teens - final call for entries

PUBLISHED: 13:39 03 October 2017 | UPDATED: 13:44 03 October 2017

Lillian teaching one of her courses

Lillian teaching one of her courses


This year’s Surrey Life photography competition for kids and teens comes to a close this weekend. Here we catch up with the founder of Sharp Shots photo club, Lillian Spibey, to learn about her love of photography

This shot of the Bay of Kotor is one of Lillian's favouritesThis shot of the Bay of Kotor is one of Lillian's favourites

When did you first fall in love with photography?

When I was 10, my father handed me his 35mm camera and said I could take two photos. Those two photos were all it took!

Tell us about your career highlights?

I have a BA in photojournalism and I’ve worked as a photographer for the past 14 years. My work has been published in a number of journals including Bradt Guides, Vogue, GQ, Country Life and the Sunday Times.

Do you have a photograph or shoot that you’re most proud of?

I loved travelling throughout Montenegro in the early 2000s, shooting images for Bradt Guides. I had never travelled to Eastern Europe before, and the experience was incredible. I couldn’t get over how big the mountains were in the Fjord and I really enjoyed exploring the small, picturesque villages along the coastline. Below is a photo I shot at 5am of a boat floating on the Bay of Kotor on 120mm film. I love working with medium format film, the image detail and richness of colours makes the expense worthwhile.

Where do you find your inspiration locally?

At this point in my life, I find a lot of inspiration on walks with my family. We tend to go for long walks throughout the Surrey countryside on the weekends, and lucky for me, my husband is big on finding great views. It usually involves walking up a hillside together and encouraging/dragging my two children, but the outcome is worth the effort.

What was the inspiration behind Sharp Shots?

The digital format has revolutionised the photographic industry, making the art of photography easier to learn and understand. To view your image immediately after clicking the shutter is a wonderful thing, and is a great learning mechanism. The kids of today aren’t scared of technology. As soon as I’ve explained how to use the camera’s buttons, the shutter button clicks and they see an immediate difference in their images. The sparks fly and they are off. When this happens, it’s a pretty incredible moment. My teen classes move faster through my teaching material than my adult classes!


How to enter:

You can enter as many photos as you like via

The rules:

Our two age groups are split into 7-11 year olds and 12-16 year olds.

We’re looking for photographic skills (good use of light, perspective, colour and composition), a photograph that reflects the title and originality.

The deadline is Saturday October 7.

The prizes:

Our teen winner will receive a Nikon CoolPix P900 (RRP £495) and there’s a Nikon CoolPix w100 up for grabs for the younger kids (RRP £130).
Thank you to Nikon UK for donating the cameras

Our partner:

Sharp Shots Photo Club is a Surrey photography club for kids and teens. Offering after-school club, holiday workshops, Duke of Edinburgh skills courses, school workshops and parties. For more, visit

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