Skip Navigation
Call +44 (0) 1273 708222   |

Spectrum/RPS Graduate Bursary winners announced

Meet the young photographers who have won the 2022 Spectrum/RPS Graduate Bursary.

An image from Labyrinth by Isabel Salmon – winner of the Spectrum/RPS Graduate Bursary
Labyrinth © Isabel Salmon

Reuben Kidd and Isabel Salmon have been named as the winners of the Spectrum/RPS Graduate Bursary 2022.

They were selected from recent BA photography graduates at UWE (University of West England).

Salmon said: “It’s a very, very nice surprise. It’s really nice to know that after uni we have some support in terms of making work. Obviously, the money for the printing will be really useful because that is something that is difficult to support.”

Kidd said: “After uni you’re sort of thrown in the deep end with trying to figure things out but with the printing masterclass and the tutorials we’re going to get with the RPS, they’re going to give us a plan about how to move forward.”

A pile of Moleskine notebooks
Moleskines © Reuben Kidd

Reuben Kidd: Moleskines

In Moleskines, Kidd explores the effects of short-term memory loss and how the mind can be replaced with a notebook.

The series is a collaborative project with his father, who has used Moleskine notebooks to combat memory loss since a stroke 20 years ago.

“With Moleskines it was very important that the project was a collaboration between my father and I due to the sensitive nature of the work and how personal his notebooks are,” says Kidd.

“Throughout the creative process my father was involved. We would meet for edit sessions and discuss the sequencing of the book.

“At the end of the project I knew I wanted to make a moving image piece and, as my father is a musician, I wanted to get him to make a piece of music in response to the work as a way of further collaborating and directly involving his creativity.”

Kidd was initially inspired by Tammy Aftab’s The Dog’s In the Car which explored her own father’s memory loss.

However, he wanted to look at in a different way and focus on his father’s notebooks.

Rather than directly responding to the notebooks, Kidd explores space and how the objects and items we interact with are an extension of our bodies and minds.

“I have always found it interesting to try and capture a subject’s essence in the space they occupy and the objects they interact with.

“I feel a landscape shot of a subjects ‘space’ can tell a lot when it comes to narrating a personality.”

A portrait of Isabel Salmon's mother
Labyrinth © Isabel Salmon

Isabel Salmon: Labyrinth

Salmon’s mother suffers from the long-term condition labyrinthitis.

Exacerbated by hormonal changes experienced during the menopause, her sensory experience of the world is disrupted.

“I was at home and spending a lot of time with my family,” says Salmon.

“I was discussing how with my own anxiety I can feel very dizzy. It can be very overpowering but no one would necessarily know. It is unseen.

“My mum was talking about how she’s had a lot of that recently and I was unaware of that.”

Symptoms of labyrinthitis include vertigo, confusion and fatigue.

Salmon wanted to create work to help her understand her mother’s condition better. Like Kidd’s project, collaboration was key for Labyrinth.

“I was interested in how she’s experiencing this slightly obscured reality.

“It was important to recognise what she said and for that to be present in the work.

“A few years ago she had to keep track of how she was feeling for the doctors because they didn’t know what it was.

“I wanted to use that as well as the conversations we had. That really informed the work and when it was shown you could really listen to her. She was leading that conversation.”

Salmon also hopes starting open conversations about the impact of menopausal hormone changes will help other women.

“That’s something that hopefully a lot of women will be able to relate to and it’s something that’s also not really spoken about.

“It is something that is very personal to me but hopefully it will open up a bigger conversation.”

A landscape portrait of Reuben Kidd's father from his Spectrum/RPS Graduate Bursary winning series Moleskines
Moleskines © Reuben Kidd

Spectrum/RPS Graduate Bursary

As winners of the bursary, Kidd and Salmon will receive the following prizes from Spectrum Photographic:

They will also gain access to RPS Pathways – a new subscription membership predominantly geared towards post-graduates and those who wish to link into a photography network.