Peter Dench - College of Arts, Humanities and Education - University of Derby

Peter Dench, Photographic Studies, 1995

What are you doing now; tell us about your role and your journey since graduation?

After graduating with a degree in BA (Hons) Photographic Studies (First class) in 1995 I headed straight for London, where I have been based ever since, working as a Photojournalist. It’s going well and I’ve had the privilege to work on assignments for a range of respected clients in over 50 countries across the globe and have published two photo books on the English: England Uncensored (Emphasis 2012) and A&E: Alcohol & England (Bluecoat Press 2014).

Hungry Eye, the film and photography journal publish my column in each issue and in September 2014, I made my debut as a TV presenter delivering a piece on What is it to be English? for Channel 4 News.

What were the main reasons you took that course?

I took the course to give myself time to mature and learn more about the craft of photography and my future profession.

Why did you choose to study the course at the University of Derby?

The reputation of the course, which at the time was impeccable and also because it was a fair distance from home, a factor I felt would enhance my independence.

What impact has studying this course at Derby had on your career?

It equipped me with the drive to survive.

How did the lecturers inspire you?

The lecturers introduced me to the many different ways there were of doing the same thing.

What are your future plans?

The immediate plan is to complete a hat-trick of books on Britishness with the publication in summer 2015 of The British Abroad. It’s a reportage on the merry antics of the (young) British abroad photographed in all their glorious splendor and excess. The project is currently live on the Kickstarter crowd funding platform.

What would you say to anyone thinking of coming to study this course at the University of Derby?

To utilise the facilities, learn how to use all the kit while it’s free, produce multiple portfolios and have fun!

Who are you still in touch with from University of Derby?

A core group of around three of us remain close friends and keep in touch with many more via social media.

Find out more about Peter’s work at

"I took the course to give myself time to mature and learn more about the craft of photography and my future profession." Peter Dench