Day 2: Finding the subject and story

by Madiha Kark

MEXICO CITY — When it comes to producing content for any creative field, be it writing, photography, film or multimedia, we question ourselves. We question our skill level, our authenticity and our ability to create an impact. We ask, “What am I adding to the conversation that hasn’t already been said?” We worry whether or not a story topic has been done to death. For the students nervous about all these questions, Monday morning provided a solace, as instructors broke into small group sessions and discussed story ideas, creative road blocks and their expectations for the final projects.

Ron Haviv and a student share a laugh during a portfolio review. Photo © Neal Jackson

The instructors stressed how pictures do not have to be sterile and perfect. “Develop empathy and understanding and give each story the time it requires,” said Natalie Keyssar explaining the importance of developing trust with subjects. The classes were an equal mix of students with beginner and advanced skill levels yet the advice given by instructors applied to everyone.

In the evening, students showcased their portfolios with one-on-one portfolio reviews with some of the top photojournalists in the field.

Michael Robinson Chavez reviewing Erika Pineros’ portfolio. Photo © Neal Jackson

As the evening sun gave way to darkness, students shared stories over steaming cups of coffee and mulled over their project ideas. Sharing stories is what makes us human and dynamic visuals have the power to evoke emotions on a deeper level. It is this sense of friendship and family that binds the participants of Foundry as they explore new horizons within and outside of themselves.

Day 1 : The story begins…

by Madiha Kark

MEXICO CITY — On a slightly chilly Sunday afternoon, inside the patio of Universidad de la Comunicación, about a 100 students waited to register for the 10th annual Foundry Photojournalism Workshop. Students from as far as Colombia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Argentina, the United States and all over Mexico mingled over warm coffees, laughter and stories.

What started as an idea to teach visual storytelling to emerging photojournalists has blossomed into a community of mentor, peers and lifelong friendships. The relationships that form through the workshop transcend barriers of culture, language, skills and background. “People become friends and they come year after year,” says Eric Beecroft, the founder of the workshop. “It is like a family.”

Students arrive at the registration tables on the first day of Foundry workshop. Photo © Madiha Kark

Instructors Maggie Steber, Ron Haviv and Andrea Bruce encouraged students to treat their stories and subjects with respect and be open to ideas. “Nobody owes you a story, you have to earn it,” said Steber.

In a place so visually and culturally alive, Mexico City is the perfect backdrop to find stories. Students discussed personal stories, proposed projects and received tips for better storytelling from the instructors. The evening instructor presentations and panel discussions were inspirational for the students, highlighting topics such as safety, intimacy and work ethics in visual storytelling.

Mexico City is a labyrinth of stories and visuals, waiting to be seen and told. The task to capture the stories and represent them with honesty and integrity is what Foundry is all about. This is where the story begins…

Stay tuned to this space for more updates.

Juan Pablo Ampuda and Adriana Zehbrauskas speak to the Foundry 2017 students about safety in Mexico City. Photo © Neal Jackson

January Sale – Foundry Cape Town 2016

January Tuition Sale
Kirsten Luce, a Foundry instructor and staff member, reviews images from her class in Antigua, Guatemala at Foundry 2014.

Save $100 or $50 from the price of Foundry Photojournalism Workshop in Cape Town, South Africa. Throughout January 2016, you can take off $100.00 USD (or $50.00 if you are from the local/regional list; see below)

* Local/regional students must be someone whose country of origin/birthplace is on the African continent. Also included are people whose country of origin is from the following countries: Brunei, Cambodia, Christmas Island, Malaysia, East Timor, Indonesia, Laos, Myanmar (Burma), Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, Vietnam.


Next workshop: Istanbul, Turkey 2010

Foundry 2010

Instructors:

and more to be announced in coming weeks…*

* instructors and guests are slated to appear; however, the demands of international reportage and assignments may require lineup changesRead more

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