National Success for Student, Deljeem


A Glasgow Kelvin College HND Photography student from the Isle of Lewis has scooped an award in the prestigious “Portrait of Britain” competition. Deljeem Rai, 32, originally from Nepal entered the portrait of John Ross earlier in 2022 and was delighted with the news that the photograph is a winning image.

He says:

“I was surprised when I heard that I had won. I felt that this was an achievement that was out of reach for me but I am so happy and excited with the award”.  

The photograph comes from Deljeems’ HND college project entitled “The Cearns” in which he aims to represent the people of the small area situated on Lewis. Deljeem said:  “The photograph of John is part of a larger project documenting the place where I grew up that is sometimes misrepresented. The people of the Cearns have such a strong sense of community and identity and I am proud to be part of that community”.  

Simon Murphy, Deljeems’ lecturer at Glasgow Kelvin College spoke of his excitement at the news.

“I’m so proud of Deljeems’ achievement.”

he said.  

“This is a project he cares deeply about and has thrown himself into. I’m not surprised that the photograph is a winner and look forward to seeing how the project develops and how this news can act as a catalyst for what is to come in his career”.  

The photograph will be displayed as part of The UK’s biggest annual photography exhibition, established as an exhibition by the people, for the people, which will see 100 winning images exhibited up and down the country in a month-long digital screen display in partnership with JCDecaux. The image will also be published in a new book by Hoxton Mini Press aimed to celebrate the diversity of a changing nation. The images can be viewed here: Winners | Portrait of Britain Photography Awards | 1854 Media 

This year’s winners provide a snapshot of a frenzied year through 99 compelling portraits. Designed to illustrate the diversity of life in modern Britain, the award invites us to reflect on the multiplicity of voices and stories across the country, forming a precious historical record of British life.

This is a great accolade for the talented HND Photography student and the College’s heartiest congratulations go to Deljeem and the inspirational staff who have supported him.