World renowned photographer Rankin, international artist Stuart Semple and war photographer Giles Duley, have all come out in support of Arts University Bournemouth’s annual competition to find emerging creative talent. The artistic heavy-weights will support the University in giving teenagers a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to showcase their creative work on billboards across the country.

The nationwide competition entitled ‘Who Are You 2’ asks for creative 14-19 year olds to create a piece of work that reflects who they are in the world today. The twenty eventual winners will then see their work supersized and displayed on billboards across the country with the support of outdoor media specialists and competition partner, JCDecaux.

International artist, Stuart Semple, one of the judges for this year’s competition, said “Nationwide opportunities such as the ‘Who Are You 2’ competition, encourage people to follow their dreams into creative industries – a place where there is always room for fresh ideas and new visionaries.”

The opportunity comes at a critical time for the UK’s creative industries which have suffered from government funding cuts to arts education. In addition, recent research commissioned by AUB shows that almost two thirds (64.6%) of people in the UK gave up on their dream career by the time they were 20 years old, while a staggering 1 in 4 people said that they didn’t feel confident enough to pursue their dream vocation.

Photographer, Rankin, who is also Judge for this year’s prize, said “It’s disappointing to see that nearly two thirds of people in the UK give up on their dream careers by the time they are 20. It’s never too late. At 21, I was actually training to be an accountant before I gave it all up to pursue my dream of becoming a photographer – and I’ve never looked back. That’s why I’m really excited to be involved with AUB’s Who Are You 2 competition, because like me, AUB is keen to inspire young people to pursue their dreams and to develop their creative potential.”

Simon Pride, Head of Marketing at the AUB, said “Who Are You 2 is all about encouraging young creatives to follow their dreams by questioning who they are and giving them the courage to pursue what they want to be – whether this be in the creative industries or elsewhere. With the winner’s artwork showcased to thousands of people on both static and digital billboards, AUB are helping young people who dream of a career in the creative industries, to launch themselves, and hopefully their careers, by giving them a huge platform to showcase their work.”

For more details on the competition, visit the AUB’s Facebook page:

Deadline for entries is on the 11th March 2013.