Do you see what I see? An online course in visual storytelling using photography

We all have a story to tell – to our neighbours, family members, colleagues and friends. Usually we share our stories in aural conversation; sometimes we write journals or even books. Our talents may include painting, poetry or prose. Due to recent technological advances, many now tell stories through images, especially through photography.

Whether your gallery is a public sales space, or a family scrapbook, or sharing on social media, this course will encourage you to deepen your experience of story telling and sharing through the heart-felt experience and artistic practice of photography.

During our four sessions together, participants will discover ways of photographing life together. Each student will learn photographic techniques which allow the image to be found, finessed and featured in some way. We will discover and test ways of sharing images effectively with any audience. In addition to discovering examples from the photo graphic tradition (landscape, portraiture, reportage, commentary etc.) participants will be given three assignments which will push them further along the photographic journey. These images will be shared within our group for enjoyment and if it may be, critique.

All classes are on Tuesdays @09:30 for ninety minutes, as follows:

Session ONE April 18 – Places Where are the places we love, the places which calm and delight us, the spaces which make us smile? This first session will primarily concern landscape photography. We will explore together the landscapes (external) and landscape (internal) of our lives. ASSIGNMENT: By the following Sunday evening photograph five of your favourite places.

Session TWO April 25 — People Who are the people who inspire and challenge us? How might we photograph them? How does the work of Josef Karsh and Annie Liebowitz display life in action or repose? This session will help us move beyond the “snapshot”, to the creation of images which display more than the data of daily life. ASSIGNMENT: By the following Sunday evening photograph up to five of your favourite people.

Session THREE May 2 – Philosophy This session will deal with image creation as of part of a philosophical or expositional process, a process where photography is used to present ideas, meaning, hopes and dreams. Such photography might be dubbed political, social and cultural, environmental or in other words. ASSIGNMENT: By the following Sunday evening submit three to five images which connect with an idea or thought or statement.

Session FOUR May 9 – Pleasure Admit it – we all like pleasure. Pleasure can encompass beauty, delight, awe and wonder. Images which convey or embody pleasure could take any form. The litmus test is, does an image make us smile. I will be curious to see what you come up with.

Each session will include time for review of the submitted images. Submission is voluntary, but group engagement and if it may be, group reaction, is invaluable.

So what are the benefits of such a course? You will enjoy photography more. You will find yourself interacting more deeply with those people and places where you live and move and find your being. You will discover a platform for expressions for those things which can  be described as your “heart’s desire.” Finally, and this we guarantee, you will have fun! All you need is:

  • A stable internet connection.
  • While Zoom can well accommodate mobile devices, a laptop or desktop will be easier to use for our purposes.
  • A digital camera of any kind (mobile device, single lens reflex, mirrorless).
  • Digital editing software is helpful though optional.
  • Some time, a modest discipline, and a sense of humour are also beneficial.

Your course leader: The Very Rev. Ken Gray, Summerland BC

Born and raised in Victoria BC, music, ministry, photography and activism have all characterized the busy life of this recently retired Dean of St. Paul’s Cathedral in Kamloops.

An avid photographer, Ken recently retired as president of the Kamloops Photo Arts Club which he invigorated and inspired throughout the pandemic. Legally blind since birth, Ken’s presentation Blinded by the Light has been well received by many clubs and groups, including a collection of Canadian blind photographers.

His ability to integrate the technical aspects of photography with majesty, mystery and mastery is acknowledged by many. He loves life, people, landscape, experience, language, learning and discovery. He loves helping others on their own unique journeys of discovery.

He is a recent contest award winner with the Canadian Association of Photographic Artists. Recent publications include The Walrus magazine.

PLEASE NOTE: Online registration is not yet available. That said, if you are seriously interested, but without any present commitment, find Ken on Facebook and send a personal message.

Ken’s images can be viewed at https://grayintheforest.smugmug.com/

Ken blogs on a variety of subjects (including photography) at

A feature article on Ken’s artistic approach can be accessed at https://www.kolbetimes.com/blind-photographer-rev-ken-gray/

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