So you’ve seen the Call for Photographers, poked around the web, and maybe even thought about which of your five images to submit, but are still wondering exactly what you might be getting into with this whole Living Exposed, Exposure: England thing. Don’t blame you one bit. To clear things up (or perhaps just add to the confusion), I’ve asked Exposure participant Jonathan Cohlmeyer a few questions about his experience on our recent Exposure: Hawai’i project and he kindly replied. The result:
Jesse: Can you please describe what kind of experience Exposure offers?
Jonathan: The Exposure projects state that they offer an opportunity to work collaboratively on photographic projects. From my experience with Exposure: Hawai’i I found this to be very true. The travel opportunity in itself was great but what the Exposure projects offer is more than a chance to travel, they offer the opportunity to be part of a collaborative team and to both learn and teach others about photography in a new environment. Each assignment takes you to places you may not have thought to go for the purposes of taking photos and makes you think about photography in new ways — both challenging the technical aspects of photography to make the camera do strange and wonderful things as well as your level of creativity in framing and taking pictures. Through group assignments and just talking about projects and photographs in the field and during post processing you are bound to learn a lot about photography.
Jesse: Besides photography, what else was Exposure: Hawai’i good for?
Jonathan: Besides photography the Exposure: Hawai’i project offered me the opportunity to explore a new place, to connect with new people and form friendships, as well as an opportunity for me to learn about myself.
On a personal level the project during Exposure: Hawai’i that helped me grow most as a photographer was the portrait assignment. During this assignment we had to ask random people on the beach to sign a form and take a portrait of them. I found this especially difficult as I am not that outgoing of a person. With the help of a staff member and Jesse I was able to complete this project and gained a bit of confidence with portrait photography.
Jesse: What was your favorite aspect of the Exposure: Hawai’i experience and do you see it happening again in England?
My favourite aspect of the Exposure: Hawai’i project was waking up every morning, disconnected from the outside world, as there was no internet access, and just thinking about one thing, what is Jesse going to throw at us today. Knowing that it would be something quite unexpected, but knowing that it would be fun to live up to the new challenge and explore Hawa’i!
Exposure: England I think will be a bit different but I do wish to again have the opportunity to work together with like minded individuals who are interested in exploring the possibilities of capturing a moment in time.
Jesse: Who is the ideal person for joining an Exposure project? What might they expect to get for their efforts?
Jonathan: The ideal person to join the Exposure: England project is not necessarily a top notch photographic technician, it is more someone who likes to work in a group environment and help others. While technical proficiency would be an asset, the Exposure projects are about learning and helping each other, both with technical questions and artistic/conceptual questions about photography.
For their efforts in participating in an Exposure project participants will get a greater understanding of photography and a network of photo friends. They will also get photos to add to their portfolio, and a great experience. But most importantly they will get new tools and confidence in their photographic skills.
Overall the Exposure projects offer an opportunity to be part of a learning and collaborative group, and at the end come out with a body of work that is unique, yet part of a group of work done by many individuals working together. On this new Exposure project, Exposure: England, there are four people returning from the Exposure: Hawai’i project. If that does not speak to the success for the project, I guess you are just going to have to come and experience the project for yourself in England!
Well there you have it folks, and I really couldn’t agree more with his final sentiment (though surely you will note my more than slight bias)! Thanks again to Jonathan for sharing his thoughts, and thanks to you for reading. Now… ready, set, apply!