To have these images chosen by my peers to reach the shortlist stage of the competition is am amazing accolade. At the time of receiving the emails I was asked not to share this information on social media, hence the reason I have not mentioned it until now.
The winners have now been chosen, with emails going out Friday and Saturday of last week, and are being officially announced today. Saturday evening after following various tweets on social media, where people were saying that the winners were emailed on Friday, with the others being emailed on Saturday; I received an email from the competition organisers. I was a little apprehensive to open it as I thought it was going to be a "sorry you missed out" email, going by the chatter on Twitter anyway. Even it was I had two images shortlisted, and that was an achievement in itself.
The first paragraph of the email read "The judging of all shortlisted images in the Take a view Awards has now been completed and the final results decided.", so I was still in the dark, however the second paragraph was in bold and said "(Please could you keep the fact that you have received this email and information about your success confidential until Monday 19th October & not put it on web pages/blogs etc until then...thanks!)".
At this stage my heart was pounding as one or both of my shortlisted images had been at least commended by the new set of judges, which included professional photographers Joe Cornish and Charlie Waite (the head judge and competition oragniser), two people whos work I greatly admire.
The third paragraph of the email informed me of my final status, which was "We are pleased to tell you that 'Sea of Pink' has been Highly commended by the judges and has won a place in the Awards book and at the London exhibition.".
My heart was now pounding even harder, as this was an incredibly major achievement for me. Although I had been asked not to share the information until today, the email also informed me that there was a possibility of my image being included in The Sunday Times Magazine.
So, yesterday morning I headed round to the newsagent to get a copy of The Sunday Times, and upon returning home, quickly opened up the bag containing the various magazines. Flicking through the pages of the magazine, there it was on the bottom half of page 40, my image in print, along with other amazing images, one of which was the overall winning image.
My image will be part of the exhibition at London Waterloo from 23rd November 2015 until the 7th February 2016.