Photographer has two pictures picked for wildlife charity calendar

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Two stunning images from a HSDC Alton student with a talent for wildlife photography are set to feature in a charity calendar.

Vibrant and colourful pictures taken by Caroline Hodgkiss have been selected for a 2022 calendar and exhibition organised by Alton Town Council to raise funds for Medstead-based HART Wildlife Rescue.

The striking photos feature insects and flowers found in Caroline’s garden at her home in Four Marks, and are set to go on display in the Go Wild! In Alton photography exhibition at Alton’s Allen Gallery from December 11 to January 9.

Caroline, who is studying the UAL level 3 diploma in art, design and communication, has loved photography from a young age but really took her passion to the next level during lockdown when she got an Olympus camera.

She said: “When I started using the camera I was impressed at the detail it picked up. Photography is my escape from everything because I can focus on one thing.

“Not many people would have thought to do insects. I’ve always had a fascination with them, especially bees. We plant so many flowers that we see so many bees.

“I want to do more wildlife photography because I’ve always loved animals. I’ve always found animals calming, especially dogs and cats.”

Caroline enlisted the help of her parents to whittle down hundreds of nature images to the final three she would enter into the competition, which aimed to show off the biodiversity of the Alton area.

As well as having two of her pictures in the calendar, which made Caroline “over the moon”, one of the pair was used on a poster advertising the exhibition.

She said: “I was screaming and jumping when I found out because I was so happy. It’s massive for me because it’s the first time I’ve really had my photography recognised and it’s a step towards putting my name out there and being recognised.”

Caroline will be at the exhibition on its opening day for a Meet the Photographers event from 10.30am until midday. The calendars cost £6 (wall) or £4 (desktop). They can be bought from the Allen Gallery, the Curtis Museum, Alton Town Council, the HART Wildlife Rescue shop and the Alton Creatives Emporium. Profits go to HART Wildlife Rescue.