After a cute cuddling session between part-time teacher Scott Hamilton and his longtime partner was caught on camera, Hamilton entered the snap in “Love in London,” a charity photo competition which asked Londoners to share inspiring images of love from around the English capitol.
Well, Hamilton won the top prize, beating out 700 other entries. Now, his photograph will be displayed on more than 50 billboards and advertising platforms across the capitol.
Hamilton said of his victory, “This competition was a really beautiful idea. I love the thought of spreading some happiness and joy across London and I’m really privileged that the judges chose my entry.”
“I think it gives a great representation of love and comfort,” he continued. “I hope that people get the same feeling of comfort and joy out of this picture that I have each time I see it.”
Hamilton explained to us on Facebook, “I was doing a series of ‘sofa portraits’ (over a few months) and it occurred to me to do one of my partner and me as we were sleepy on the sofa so I could give him a print as a gift.”
On why the judges picked his entry to win, he tells us, “Maybe the ‘classical painting’ lighting style which is one of my signature looks. As an artist one tries to convey a sense of something and I guess the more people who pick up on what was intended then the more successful the work.”
The “Love in London” competition was launched on Valentine’s Day by the dating app CLiKD “to share a wave of positivity across the capital and inspire its people.”
One of the judges, Kim Leuenberger, said Hamilton’s photo “stood out because there was a very deep and unique intimacy in the image that you’d almost forget it was captured by a camera and another human being, the photographer.”
She added, “When you look at it, you’re automatically transported to that scene of just love and comfort.”
The charity competition is also helping to raise funds for PhotoVoice, a London-based organization which helps promote social change and support at-risk communities through art and photography.
PhotoVoice CEO, Tom Elkins, said, “Congratulations to Scott. It is a beautiful photo and a worthy winner. This competition has been a fantastic opportunity for photographers to tell their stories about what makes London so special for them.
“The images submitted have been moving, beautiful, thoughtful, and have shown how rich and varied culture London has,” Elkins said.
Hamilton explains his win is just another example of how London is a very accepting city for LGBTQ people. “Living in London, I’m so used to gay not being an issue,” he told us. “And this win just confirms that’s the case.”