Have you ever dreamed of trying to make a difference through the art of photography? I know I have. When I first got into this industry, nearly 8 years ago, I had high hopes of traveling the globe while working for National Geographic and changing the world. Totally realistic for a guy that just bought his first DSLR camera right? Over the years I have learned that while many photographers might have great intentions of trying to make the world a better place, more often then not, they don’t know where to start or how to get involved. That is why I created The Giving Lens, an organization whose mission is to fuse photo education with giving back to local communities.
Starting in 2012, The Giving Lens will offer multiple low cost photography workshops all over the globe. Each workshop will have participants working directly with an NGO on the ground in the given country. They will be engaging with local individuals while learning photography and making a difference in the lives of those communities they are working in. Think low cost, all inclusive (aside from airfare) workshops, where you not only learn to become a better photographer, but where your hands on experiences change lives. The workshops themselves will not be focused on humanitarian photography, but travel and landscape work as well. Did I mention that the vast majority of the cost of the workshop goes directly towards the NGOs we are working with and that most of the expense is also a tax write off? On top of that, my team is working hard to come up with creative and interactive ways where EVERYONE can get involved. We fully understand that not everyone can take a week off of work or afford a photo workshop, even one as affordable as ours. There will always be plenty of opportunity for people to play their role..no mater what their situation.
Sound too good to be true? Head to The Giving Lens website and sign up to be notified when we launch. Alot more information will be available in the coming weeks and months. I will leave you with one of my favorite quotes that was used in an Apple commercial back in 1997.
“Here’s to the crazy ones. The misfits. The rebels. The trouble – makers. The round heads in the square holes. The ones who see things differently. They’re not fond of the rules, and they have no respect for the status – quo. You can quote them, disagree with them, glorify, or vilify them. But the only thing you can’t do is ignore them. Because they change things. They push the human race forward. And while some may see them as the crazy ones, we see genius. Because the people who are crazy enough to think they can change the world, are the ones who do”