Talented Sevenoaks man with Down’s syndrome short listed for international …

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A BUDDING photographer from Sevenoaks has been short listed for international photography competition, My Perspective.

Edward Phippen, of Seal Chart, entered the competition which is run annually by the Down’s Syndrome Association with pictures he took while on holiday.

More than 300 entries were submitted for judging and the 22-year-old told the Chronicle he is thrilled to have been selected as one of the final 25.

“It feels really awesome to be short listed,” he said. “I found out by email and I am very proud.”

The My Perspective competition aims to give people with Down’s syndrome the chance to show their perspective of the world around them and to challenge preconceived ideas about people with Down’s syndrome in a thought-provoking way.

Pictures were submitted from entrants from as far afield as America and New Zealand, who all have the genetic condition.

The youngest of three siblings, Edward, –Eddie to his family – first got into photography after receiving a digital camera for his birthday.

His mother, Caroline, said: “We gave him a little digital camera for his 21st and then when he went on holiday with a friend of ours to the Isle of Tiree in the Inner Hebrides, he took a lot of photos there.

“Our friend is a very keen photographer and I think it rubbed off.

“They have beautiful blue skies and views there and that’s the sort of thing that really interests him and what was in his photo.”

Speaking about his new hobby, Edward said: “I like to take pictures of everything. I don’t have a favourite thing to take pictures of. I took one of the beach on holiday because it was beautiful.”

On Thursday evening the Phippen family will join other short listed entrants at Kew Gardens for an awards ceremony where the competition winner will be announced.

“I am really looking forward to it,” Edward said, “but I don’t know what I’m going to wear yet.

“My family will be with me and probably my sister.

“It would mean everything to me if I did win – I don’t mind if I don’t – but it would mean everything to me if I did.”

And this is not the first time that Edward has been short listed for the My Perspective competition which is now in its fifth year.

“Edward was short listed last year as well,” Mrs Phippen added. “The ceremony is such a lovely event with a real mix of people all dressed up and they serve canapés– it’s quite special.

“Some of the photos are amazing and it’s a really enjoyable event. Last year Eddie was off flirting with ladies from the cast of EastEnders and he loved it!

“We’re looking forward to this one.”

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