‘Parallax’ book inspires school photography project

An insight into the world of photography was provided to children at St Leonards School in Dunedin.

Principal Jo Wilson said she was inspired by Parallaxthe collection of images recently published by Otago Daily Times photographer Gerard O’Brien.

This sparked a photography project that will span the rest of Term 3, encouraging students to consider objects from new perspectives.

Mr O’Brien also visited the school yesterday to talk about photography and give his thoughts on student photos

“For years I’ve followed… the things that Gerard has done because I really like the way he notices the simple things and turns them into something really artistic,” Ms Wilson said.

She wanted students to see rather than just look, and identify the parts that make up objects, rather than just seeing the object as a whole, she said. The students were already doing observational drawing once a week, and photography was a good artistic extension.

Students took a series of thematic photos, including both nature and man-made objects.

They would exhibit their own portfolios at the end of term alongside the school’s annual wearable arts project.

“The next challenge will be taking pictures of shadows to see what shapes are interesting.

“There’s never a right answer – it’s individuals in the way they look at it.”

Student Natalie Young (8) said she had taken around 10 photos so far on the project, and insects and worms were her favorite subjects.

“I love worms because they help the earth,” Natalie said.

“They are very cute.”

Although she wanted to work with animals one day, learning photography was fun, she says.

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