TAKE 5 Gallery Exhibit at the PRC

As many of you know, I spent this year teaching five middle school children photography. The kids were from the Epiphany school in Dorchester, which is a place very dear to my heart. It is a school that combines social services with education. And when I say education, they are at school 12 hours a day, 6 days a week, 11 months a year. They work hard to make a second home for these amazing kids.

Wednesday quickly became my favorite day of the week. I would arrive at the school early to look through their memory cards and then have class from 2:30-5:00.

My kids; Devon, Wendy, Tayla, Shantez and Alonzo, were quite shy at first about sharing their photos with me and each other. But we became a team. Photography is so intimate, because it shows others how you see, what you choose to put four corners around. Our class was a safe environment, and no photo was off limits.

We started with self-awareness exercises mixed with the rules of photography. When the kids were only bringing in 15-20 pictures, the rule became at least 200 a week.

Come January, all the kids broke out into their own “style” of photography and something they wanted to focus on.

Last week, their work was presented in the Photographic Resource Center of Boston. It looked beautiful and I was so proud of them. The reception was very well attended and I was bombarded with inquiries about how to buy the kid’s work.

“What I want to Say Is…” will also be on display all summer at the Mayor’s Gallery in City Hall (June 19-August 17th). Please go and check it out if you haven’t seen it.

I want to thank many people for helping the first year of TAKE 5 happen. Erin Yuskaitis at the PRC for not only helping curate the show, but actually hammering it into the walls. Eric Luden of Digital Silver Imaging for printing, mounting and framing all their work. (It really looks spectacular). Lindsey Strippoli for designing our logo, the legal team at Goodwin Procter, Jerome Eno for doing the website, Christin McClave for being on our Board… What a great group of people to work with.

But most of all, I want to thank the Epiphany School for letting me work with these five extraordinary kids. Devon and his love of night shots and roller coasters. Wendy and her ode to her mother’s detail in making a nice life for her and her brothers. Alonzo and his documentary of him in his room. Shantez for showing us her two personalities. And Tayla and her love of the car and color.

Like I always say… the camera can be a gift on a thankless day. Keep taking pictures. And always keep in touch. I’m going to miss these guys.


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