Story of a Photo
- Posted by JoAnn Reynolds on May 25th, 2012
I have to say, I love my job. After working for over 10 years in communications roles in theatre, dance, music, film and visual art in Calgary, I've landed myself in a spot where I am able to work for them all!
The learning curve has been steep and I see mountains of work to do, but I work with people every day that push themselves to make this the kind of city we want it to be and it is pretty darn inspiring.
When I used to work in theatre, if I was feeling bogged down by the weight of admin work and challenges ahead, all I needed to do was pop into the rehearsal hall or sneak quietly onto the balcony to soak it in and remember why I was toiling away. Worked every time.
In my time here I have found those same moments in conversations, in hearing the stories from artists and administrators about why they do what they do and even learning a bit about the how.
Answering that "how" question leads me to the point of this post. I have enjoyed the task, along with our team, of assembling the images for our annual Accountability Report. We have an amazing repository of images provided to us from organizations we fund through our operating grant program.
For this year's cover shot I was looking for an image that I felt conveyed the vibrancy of Calgary's arts sector. Vibrancy not only in the shot itself, but also in the organization and the "how" behind it.
I have had several of those conversations that remind me why I do what I do with Nicole Mion, curator of Springboard Performance's Fluid Movement Arts Festival in Calgary. Nicole and her team got into a bit of a mess creating the promotional image for the 2011 Fluid Festival, which has emerged as a nationally acclaimed presenter of outstanding dance and physical performance.
When I talked to Nicole about the behind the scenes work of the photo I heard all about who to go to if I ever needed to buy dehydrated milk in HUGE bulk quantities!
Photographer Kimberley French, who lived in Calgary for many years and now lives in Vancouver shooting stills for the movie industry, photographed dancer Jennifer Clarke in a vat of milk poured into a little kids' pool. The white "slime" in the shot was the same material used in the Ghostbusters film that makeup artist Cory Roberts mixed up for Nicole and the team. So they just had a little bit of fun.
I’m grateful that we are able to use the photo to help tell Calgary Arts Development’s 2011 story and that we can tell their story just a little bit, too.