21-9-2011 | Irish winner in international epilepsy photography competition

21 September 2011
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20-year old James Leahy, a native of Co Dublin and a student at the Dublin Institute of Technology, has won 3rd prize in the prestigious International Bureau for Epilepsy (IBE) photo competition "Epilepsy Without Words".

James's photo entitled Fear of it all finished ahead of over 300 entries from all corners of the world.

"I have always been interested in design and photography" says James. "Since I was diagnosed with epilepsy at 13, it has helped me to express my feeling when I am angry or upset about having epilepsy".

"When I found out about the photo competition through Brainwave - The Irish Epilepsy Association, I knew that I had to enter. I had just finished a project for my course at DIT and my mum recommended that I enter one of the photos I did for that called 'Fear of it all'".

The photo (below) expresses the feeling of anger and fear of having to go back to hospital because of epilepsy. The photo includes James's MRI scan and some of his hospital identification wristbands. It also includes a photo of James himself laid over the brain scan.









"I didn't expect to win of course, so when I heard that I had finished third, I was overjoyed", says James.

James's photo was recently displayed at the International Epilepsy Congress in Rome, an event attended by over 4,500 doctors and epilepsy advocates from around the world. His artistic skills with the camera have earned James a well deserved $500. Having just returned from working in the US for the summer, he now plans to continue with his studies in visual communications at DIT and to hopes to become seizure free.

Brainwave is delighted to see an Irish winner in the competition and we hope that James's photo as well as many of the others submitted will be useful in helping to raise awareness of epilepsy.

All the photographs submitted to the competition, including the prize winners are available to view on the IBE website, www.ibe-epilepsy.org.


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