We are so grateful to have had the opportunity to return to our students and friends in Riviére Froide this summer.
We’d like to share some reflections and highlights from another wonderful and productive workshop. It is amazing how much can be accomplished in such a short period of time. Beyond teaching young people how to take a photograph, there are many important and eye-opening experiences that come from a One Bird project. As educators and students, we appreciate and greatly value the reciprocity in the learning process, where all involved participate as both teacher and student. We learned new words in Creole, and our students learned advanced functions of the DSLR cameras. We visited student homes and learned more about their daily lives, and they learned the rule of thirds and that Joseph-Nicéphore Niépce was (arguably) the inventor of photography. By the end of our ten-day program, Ariya was driving around Carrefour like a pro, and our students were holding cameras and taking pictures like professional photographers!
This summer we worked with forty-three students in two groups; an advanced class consisting of third year students, and a beginning level class comprised mostly of new students, with a few second year students.
Building on two summers of photography workshops, the advanced class was introduced to the creative uses of shutter speed and aperture through motion and depth of field. These students also used manual focus for the first time instead of relying on auto focus. Evens Mevoit, the director of MEJHAM, our partner organization in Haiti, gave a lecture on using the Internet to create online photography portfolios. He showed the students how to use applications such as Powerpoint and how to create a Picasa account. Evens’ vision for the young people in his community is that they not only use their photography skills as a creative outlet, but also as a way to earn income and provide for themselves and their families. He wants to help them by establishing a photo business so they could photograph weddings and other local events. One Bird will continue to provide hands on instruction and we will continue to seek funding to purchase more photo equipment in order to help MEJHAM realize their goal.
During the course of the week, the advanced class worked together to create an audio slideshow as well! They wrote scripts, which they recorded as narration for their selected images.
Our third year in Riviére Froide marked the transition of our lead translator, Bruno M. Germain, to lead photography teacher for our class of first-year students. We are excited to add Bruno to our roster of talented One Bird instructors. In this class of 28 students, we also had one of our advanced students, Fortuné, step into the role of translator from student. Both Bruno and Fortuné did an outstanding job and we look forward to having more of our students move into leadership roles in the future. This group created journals and personal maps of Haiti, while learning photographic composition and how to use point and shoot and DSLR cameras. For the exhibition they each selected two photographs that illustrate the idea of contrast, which we showcased along with their creative writing.
Students from both classes expressed a range of feelings and impressions through their photographs, writing, and narration. Many shared the pride they feel for their country and community, as well as their wish to make it better. When they take pictures, they not only see the reality of their surroundings, but also a future where the government better cares for it’s people, with better infrastructure, more trees, and less trash to support a healthier community.
Thank you for your continued support as we help get the important stories of the Riviére Froide Kid Camera Project students heard!
The Riviére Froide Kid Camera Project 2014 Summer Program was made possible by:
Art4Moore, David Meinhardt, Jake Martin, Rafe & Rose Martin, Jen Perena, Monika Ueffinger, Community Darkroom (Sharon Turner), Michaela Cannon, Sasha Cardena, Christine James, Kim Loan Nguyen, Greg Sheldon, Susan Meggs, Deborah Dallinger, Priya Thridandam, Van Nguyen, Eva Silverman, Urfa Qadri, Surinder & Kathy Malik
Ariya, Bruno (translator and newest instructor), and Tara
Turbo and Tara selecting images while his brother Leger works on his narration for the audio slideshow
In the school yard taking pictures
Berno, Beginning student
Christerline, Advanced student
Alexis Franz, Beginning student
Exhibition and Awards Ceremony