Calling all visual storytellers! This February, King’s is inviting high school students to learn new photojournalism skills through a free Zoom workshop and a photo essay contest.
The workshop takes place Sunday, February 7, from 4–5 p.m. AST, and will be led by Jeff Harper, a photojournalism instructor at King’s whose experience includes photography work for The Chronicle Herald, The Globe and Mail, the Canadian Press, The National Post and Reuters.
Jeff will discuss what photojournalism is, what makes a good picture—including some concrete tips on how to achieve one—and how to develop longer photo essays and stories. Workshop participants are invited to have questions prepared, though Jeff says “A desire to make better pictures is all you need to come with.” All cameras and levels of technical experience are welcome.
One major topic in the workshop will be the aspect of intentional storytelling that separates photojournalism from most traditional photography.
“Photojournalism is really about recording the human condition and history as it unfolds. I mean, that’s what really makes the photos more important … we’re capturing moments in time, right? And when we look back on them they become even more important.”
For students who aren’t planning on studying journalism, Jeff notes that strong photojournalism skills can come in handy for almost any field, whether it’s marketing, marine biology or even just creating great content for social media platforms.
“We’re very visual communicators, as humans,” says Jeff. “It seems like everyone’s an expert in making videos for TikTok or for YouTube these days, but learning the skills to tell stories with your pictures is going to elevate your work, and that’s really what we focus on in the [King’s] Journalism department.”
In addition to the workshop, Grade 12 students are also invited to enter the King’s photo essay contest, which asks participants to submit a collection of six to seven photos on the theme “a sense of place,” documenting a specific neighbourhood or location of the photographer’s choice. The grand prize winner will receive a Canon EOS Rebel SL-3 camera and King’s merchandise, and will have their winning photo essay published on the ukings.ca website. Two runners up will also receive a prize.
“What you have to really do is paint a picture of that place,” says Jeff, who will be judging the contest alongside another King’s staff member. “It doesn’t matter where you live—it’s got a story, something that makes it different from somewhere else, and the challenge is to capture that in your hometown.”
The deadline for entering the photo essay contest is Monday, March 8 at 11:59 p.m. AST.
Photo: Nikon F3P by Jusni Nasirun