the day after leap day, i ended up just basking ... because i survived teaching photography to a dozen high school students for two hours!
we started with the notion of the camera as a passport to experiences. i encouraged the students to describe their own experiences while photographing, and then to find stories and imagine how the journalists felt getting the story. with photography, we usually concentrate on the photograph, the subject, while overlooking the experience of the photographer in making that image. i wanted to bring the students' experiences forefront, to acknowledge the value of the experience itself.
then we moved on to two kinds of portraits: those with the subject looking right into the camera lens, and portraits without showing the subject's face. i was moved by the students' work and their descriptions of why they shot what they shot. and they seemed to value the images and words i brought to them. i even got them away from playing with their cell phones for parts of this informal class!
i experienced mucho stress in the weeks and days before this class, in preparing what to bring to the students. but all in all, i felt our time together was valuable to them and they took away ideas and techniques they can use in their photographic futures, which were the most important things. one student even gushed as i departed, "you were the best guest presenter we've ever had!" which felt great!