Fashion shots at Cannes

Lights, Camera, Action! Coleg Gwent photography & media students visit the Cannes Film Festival

28 June 2023

The Cannes Film Festival is an annual event celebrating international cinema, that brings together filmmakers, actors, producers, distributors and critics worldwide

The renowned festival takes place every year in Cannes along the French Riviera, on the southeast coast of France.  

This year, four of our A-Level Photography & Media students from Torfaen Learning Zone were lucky enough to attend the festival as part of their work experience through our partner, Java creative agency. Cynthia Langeveldt, Brand Manager at Java has been working with the students since September delivering weekly workshops in portraiture & fashion photography.  

Photographing person on steps in CannesThrough international contacts, Cynthia was able to give our students the unique opportunity to be the official photographers for the event’s renowned fashion week, where the students were involved in the set-up, creative direction, photography and production.   

The experience aimed to broaden their understanding of art direction at a professional event while nurturing their artistic capabilities. 

Photography student Charlotte Pitt said: “On the first day we took photos of each outfit being walked in the show and the second consisted of exploring the city of Cannes and choosing settings for outdoor photography. The experience has been very rewarding. Working with industry professionals brings challenging expectations and has forced me out of my comfort zone. The trip has enhanced my ability to understand how the photography industry works and has given me great experience and insight into what working on a project in a professional environment would be like. As a result, I feel more prepared for what’s to come in the future.” 

Holly Gough who also attended the trip said: “My role was to photograph the models and be creative. Interacting with different people from across the world was very interesting and getting to experience what these people do for a living was great. The trip has helped my confidence and has made me realise how much more I have to offer in this industry.” 

Travelling to a prestigious event like the Cannes Film Festival helps students learn to navigate new environments, overcome challenges, and adapt to different cultural norms. They gain independence, confidence, and resilience as they step out of their comfort zones and immerse themselves in an international setting. 

Coleg Gwent students on red carpet at CannesPhotography student Lydia Lansberry said: “Attending the Cannes Festival as a photographer was an amazing experience and pushed me out of my comfort zone. We had the opportunity to work with models, as well as all other people involved such as producers and make-up artists, which gave me an insight into what life as a fashion photographer could be like. The highlight for me was the day we spent doing street photography with the models. I have learnt that setting up an event like this is no easy task, and it takes hours of planning and teamwork.”

Sam Warr, Lecturer at Coleg Gwent, said: “Our visit to the prestigious Cannes Film Festival was a remarkable adventure offering students much more than an exciting getaway. It immersed them in the world of event photography and provided them with unique networking opportunities.” 

Want to start your career in photography? At Coleg Gwent, we have AS/A-Level Photography courses available across three campuses – Torfaen Learning Zone, Blaenau Gwent Learning Zone and Crosskeys Campus 

Find out how you can make it in the photography industry.