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Futures Fund helps talented photographer


Dreana's work installed.

Dreana Bulmer-Thompson

Following her final year degree show Dreana Bulmer-Thompson was asked to produce an exhibition at the Low Lights Heritage Centre in North Shields. It is then when she turned to the Futures Fund for support in hosting her first solo exhibition. 

As well as achieving a BA (Hons) in Photography, Video and Digital Imaging, Dreana was also awarded the NEPN Graduate Networking Award in recognition of her critical engagement with a photographic network of peers and contribution to the visual arts community as an emerging photographer. 

The Graduate Development Scholarship was crucial in helping Dreana to print the photos and have her prints mounted. 

Her exhibition, Heath’s Piscary, examined the impact of a declining fishing industry and the re-purposing of the North Shields Fish Quay and the surrounding area as a heritage and conservation site.

She said: “Heath’s Piscary Exhibition was really well received by both visitors to the gallery and the staff. With over 3000 visitors during the three weeks and a half my exhibition was on display for I was overwhelmed by the response. 

“Having the exhibition in the heart of the area where the images were made gave me the opportunity to engage with the visitors and to point out the places where the images were made.” 

She continued: “The comments in the book I had left specifically for the purpose, has added to my belief that carrying out similar work at all the once thriving fishing ports around the UK is a worthwhile pursuit. 

“I intend to hold exhibitions at each port that the work is made in, with the culmination of the work to be made into a book. 

“Through visitors to the gallery and some of the casual staff there I have made some good connections for future work. One of the public houses featured in an image have asked if I would do a series of publicity photographs for them.” 

For Dreana hosting her first solo exhibition has been hugely beneficial for her career as an artist. 

She explained: “I have been greatly encouraged to continue with my ambition to be a photographer who concentrates on exhibitions rather than traditional paid photography work such and weddings and portraits. 

“Doing this gives me the freedom to follow my dreams and concentrate on concept artistic photography. Where possible at future exhibitions I will have for sale some images that although related to the work will be of a more saleable content and therefore generate an income through my photography, albeit a small one.” 

Dreana concluded: “I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Development Trust for providing me with the funding for my first solo exhibition. It has been an absolutely brilliant experience and will stand me in good stead for my future exhibitions and working as a photographic artist.”

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