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| p.1 #2 · Photography and Childrens Literacy |
Every image is a message that is being conveyed to its audience/viewer. The words on the pages of a book are chosen with specific intent to deliver its message that the author desires to convey.
We choose things like subject, composition, tone, hue, lines, shape, value, contrast, lighting, etc. ... those are our words, punctuation and grammar ... all to create an image that will convey a mood/message/memory to our viewer/audience. The artful craft of assembling words into a message/story is replicated in our craft with the same deft necessary to attract, captivate, and enthrall our viewer to a meaningful and memorable message being conveyed, remembered and valued, just as much as any great biography (portrait), novel (fantasy image), poem (moody scene) or scientific journal (forensic/photojournalism), etc.
You can write down some words on paper @ "Just the facts, ma'am." or you can wax poetic like Shakespeare or David, the choices made by the author parallel the choices we make as photographers crafting our own visual messages to be conveyed to our audience/viewer. The need to communicate the message remains constant, the medium and style are variable.
They are both a means of communication and the nuance of making such a communication in either the word form or the image form remains pertinent to the human condition of communication, be that verbal or visual. Advancing our knowledge and experience with using tonal value, composition, etc. provides us the tools for improving our image making. Advancing our knowledge and experience using words, tone, punctuation, pace, etc. (writing, reading) improves our verbal communication as well.
Words can take your reader to places that they can't get to by themselves. Our images can do the same ... whether a picture from outer space, a mountain top, a jungle, fall colors, spring bloom, deserted ghost town, old train station or a macro that reveals things unseen to the casual observer, both words and images can transport us to another time & place.
Tailoring to audience ... both can be fun/cool/relaxing/entertaining (elementary kids), and empowering (learning, growth), (rewarding) career $$/satisfying, communication/message ... in either case, literacy is a powerful thing, just like our images can be powerful too.
GL ... wish I could be there, it sounds very worthy. Tell it from the heart of what you aspire to gain when you read & what you strive for in creating an image for your viewer ... you'll do fine, just show your passion for both. Also, if you've got a chance, you might seek out a local "story teller" .. they could give you a few quick tips/practice at how to captivate/engage your audience (elementary kids) in such a brief time frame.