It’s the time of the year when some Oxford University students are sitting their final exam and immediately after they’ve exited the exam schools they celebrate with their friends in various different ways that can involve lots of colourful confetti, silly string, shaving foam and various liquid refreshments and sometimes food as well. The celebrations are known as trashing and looking through my archive I first photographed it in 1989 (last two pictures). Back then I don’t remember as many students doing it as they do now but no matter how crazy it looks I’ve always enjoyed photographing it because I haven’t come across any other occasion where you can see such a visual expression of pure joy and elation. Friends greeting friends to show their support and help celebrate freedom. Still images can’t really canvey the atmosphere because you really need to hear the laughing, cheering, screaming and shouting that goes along with all of the colour.
This is my first set of pictures from this years’ trashing and there will be lots more to come. Unfortunately I keep being accused of working for the Daily Mail because of a ridiculous article they put out recently about binge drinking that used pictures of Oxford University students celebrating the end of their exams. Tabloid junk at its best. It’s no wonder the Daily Mail have removed the ability to leave a comment under the article. My passion is photography and documenting life, particularly in Oxford which is a place I am proud to call my home town. I don’t judge and I certainly don’t supply my pictures to the tabloid gutter press.
[Tech info:] Nikon FM2, 100/2.8 Series E lens, Kodak Hawkeye film. Processed by ASDA, Swindon.