The exhibition “This camera is heavy” is a collaboration between Eyes on Main Street, the SPOT afterschool program, and the Columbia College Chicago Diane Dammeyer Youth Photography Initiative.
Over a period of eight weeks, experienced photographers connected to Eyes on Main Street mentored approximately 180 students from 3rd to 5th grade on how to use photography as a tool to explore the world around them. The initial 10-minute instruction on how to use a DSLR camera took place on the SPOT campus and was followed by an instructional walk through the surrounding neighborhoods of Wilson.
“This camera is heavy” is one of the recurring statements that students exclaimed as they picked up for the first time one of the supplied professional Canon DSLR cameras. Many of the cameras used in the workshop have had a rich history of observing world events in the hands of many prominent photojournalist and sports photographers; truly the camera is heavy.
It is only fitting that these cameras have found themselves in the hands of the next generation of creative spirits and thought leaders. Eyes on Main Street has left two cameras at the SPOT to encourage students to continue their photographic explorations. We hope you enjoy these dynamic photographic visions by the youth of Wilson as much as we do.
“The youth of today are the leaders of tomorrow.”
Nelson Mandela (1918-2013)
The hard work of the young photographers plus the generous support of Diane Dammeyer and Canon USA have made this exhibition possible.
Many thanks to Matt Edwards, Tracy Pittman and the staff of the SPOT for their valued friendship and shared belief in the youth of Wilson.
The photographers working with Eyes on Main Street to mentor the SPOT youth were Jerome De Perlinghi, Peter Fitzpatrick, George Freeney and Nikki Pruitt. Special thanks to this team for their dedication to encouraging young photographers’ dreams.