Since February, CMAP & JUCONI Ecuador have together been running a separate project ‘The Professional Photographers Group’ alongside the weekly art clubs. When I arrived in Guayaquil, I was keen to get stuck into anything photographic I could, and especially work with young people as well as the art club kids, so lucky for me there was already a group of JUCONI Graduates who wanted more help and access to photography, developing interests they have been introduced to as children thanks to CMAP and Art Club. Thanks to the enthusiasm, support and organisation of JUCONI, the group and I have been meeting weekly for workshops and seminars, and have become the official JUCONI events photographers.
Blanca, Nicole, Michele, Katie and I ran our one-day-only-darkroom 2 weeks ago, it was a bit of a farewell from me and thank you to everyone supporting our photography, but also, for Nicole and Michele, their first ever dark room experience. It’s so wonderful being with people their first time in the dark room – it is nothing if not magic!
In the morning Katie and I taught the girls to use the pinhole-cameras (aka – drinks cans) and come afternoon we opened the door to the hoards of JUCONI staff who were eager to see the darkroom and develope their own photographs. The students became the teachers in the afternoon, guiding everyone through their first pin-hole experience, explaining how it works (to everyones disbelief!) and introducing them to the darkroom. The experience of becoming the ‘tutor’, for the young photographers, was worthwhile and they did an excellent job – I hope that in future they will be able to share their skills with more and more JUCONI kids by themselves facilitating photography groups.
The fact that we were able to turn the Operational Directors office into a dark room for a day, and were over-run by eager staff wanting to learn, is testament to the support and enthusiasm we recieve from JUCONI Ecuador.
If you want to know more about the magic of pinhole photography and using drinks cans as cameras (amongst many other inane objects) read here … http://www.pinholephotography.org/