Reframing Resistance: a collective photo project
Welcome to the "Reframing Resistance" webpage. This page should provide most of the information that you will need to successfully participate in the collective photo project.
All too often, the images that are popularized by the media are sensationalist and reinforce oppressive stereotypes of people who choose to protest. For a variety of political, economic, technological and social reasons, mainstream media has become more and more rapid in its delivery and coverage of important events, and usually, the critical issues which lie at the root of an issue are missed. Over the last few years, the opposition to free trade economic models and secret trade meetings has been characterized by much media as merely the devilish work of a few 'young, white, uninformed and violent radicals'. This is clearly not reflective of the broad cross-section of those who are voicing their resistance to these Trade Agreements.
"Reframing Resistance" is an attempt to counter this inaccurate picture, through a collective photo project by the critics of free trade ourselves. The goal of the project is to produce a much more in-depth view of the growing and diverse resistance to the FTAA. By providing members of a variety of organizations, who are participating in our democratic right to protest, with free single-use Black and White film cameras, the participants can therefore photograph from their own perspectives. Rather than be objects of the mainstream media, this project is an attempt to empower the participants through the process of representing themselves in a way that they feel accurately portrays their reasons for protesting.
project is being coordinated by griot photo, a social documentary photography
organization that specializes in the documentation of the work of NGOs and
current social justice issues.
If you need a camera, please e-mail email@example.com as soon as possible with a very brief description of your organization and why you'd like to be involved.
As long as it is somehow related to the actions you and your group are involved in with respect to your opposition to the FTAA, please feel free to use the provided camera. Rather than simply photographing the police/protestor confrontation, it is hoped that participants will try to document a variety of events - such as: preparing for the demonstration, educating your communities, traveling to Quebec, the people's summit, the demonstration of the FTAA, and post-Quebec City events.
Like many grassroots projects, this one is based on trust and your commitment in order for the project to be successful. The more groups that participate, the more diverse the perspectives that are reflected. Once the cameras have been given to you, we have no control over whether they come back to us. We are counting on your interest in participating in this project as a sign that you share the same goals as the project. As soon as you have finished the film, please return the whole camera to us. Do not open the camera. We will then process the film, make contact sheets of the negatives, edit the work (editorial committee members needed!), and make final prints/scans for the website and exhibit.
If you would like to provide caption information, it would be very welcome. At the very least, please provide an e-mail contact where we can contact you for photo info after editing. Basic caption info should include name of group/community, date, location, name of event, and names of subjects from left to right. If you prefer to leave the names anonymous, that's OK. Any thoughts, personal feelings, or other notes (text not graphics) that you wish to include are also welcome. After processing and editing, the photographs will be posted online and will be available to the participating organizations for their publications, newsletters, etc. Hopefully, depending on the demand and available resources, a traveling exhibition will be produced.
Please return the cameras to:
Reframing Resistance, c/o Griot Photo, 2-44 Sweetland Ave., Ottawa, ON, K1N 7T6, Canada
If you would prefer to process the film first and then send us the negatives, please ensure that you explain to the processor that the camera contains real Black and White film. (Many processors have only seen colour single-use cameras before).
Photo Credits and Use of Photographs
As the person taking the photographs is the "author" of the work, the copyright of those photos belongs to them. On each camera, there is a label with a blank line for you to enter the name (or e-mail - so we can contact you for the name) that you would like to appear as a photo credit. This can be a person, an organization or it could be "anonymous".
The photographs will not be published anywhere without the prior consent of the specific photographer/organization.
The photographs will not be sold.
How to use the camera
If you have already received a camera, please take a minute to familiarize yourself with it's functions. They are very basic cameras but keep in mind a few things:
To take a picture, look through the viewfinder and frame the picture. To be in focus, subjects should be at least 1 metre away from the camera. Try to ensure that there is nothing in front of the lens when you press the shutter button. For flash pictures, your subject should be about 3 metres from you to avoid overexposure and to create even flash lighting. To use the flash, press the button on the front face of the camera (next to the green label) to charge the flash. When it is charged, the flash ready light on the back of the camera to the left of the viewfinder will light up. Then depress the shutter button to take the picture. Take special care to keep your fingers clear of the flash window on the front of the camera.
Make sure that you keep the lens clean of any dust, water, etc. If it becomes dirty, breathe gently on it to form condensation, and then wipe with a clean tissue in a circular spiral motion from the centre to the edges. Do not expose the camera to excessive heat or water.
These are just suggestions, and like most guidelines and rules, often you end up with more interesting results by ignoring the advice. Don't be afraid to experiment and be creative.
The cameras are loaded with 27 exposures of 35mm Ilford HP5 Black and White negative film (400 ASA).
Suggestions / Guidelines
Think about photographing to communicate how you feel not just what you find in front of you. Think about what you have found missing from mainstream media and photograph that. Think about the photographic process itself - what are you framing? What are you leaving out of the frame?
While it is impossible to restrict the subject matter of participants' photographs, it should be remembered that photographs of persons engaged in illegal activities are sometimes used as incriminating evidence by the authorities. As the edited photos will be online, be careful what and who you photograph, and think about the rights and privacy of the subject(s). We do not want to unwillingly jeopardize our fellow protestors.
Do not, under any circumstances, give your camera to a stranger, or anyone claiming to be with the photo project or griot photo. If you risk arrest, arrange to have someone you know take your camera. If you are arrested (rightfully or wrongfully), and your camera is taken from you, please try to get the name and badge number of the officer(s) and check the label on the bottom plate of the camera to see whether the camera has been opened and the film exposed and/or removed.
The participants of this project do so as individuals at their own risk. The coordinators of the project take no responsibility for any actions resulting in the injury or arrest of participants. Participants are not employees of the project or are they under the direction of the project. The project is not a membership organization or affinity group.
Get involved / Donations
This project requires a lot of volunteer time, effort and funds. We are in need of donations of all kinds (funding, processing, lab materials, editing committee members, translation, etc.). If you are interested in becoming involved please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Other Photographic Submissions
Many of you will already be taking photographs to document your work. If you would like to forward them for possible inclusion in the project, please do so. They may be returned to you if you wish.
If you have any questions, suggestions, etc., please contact email@example.com