I’m looking to roll out a whole new set of workshops across South Wales this Spring and Summer. It’s really exciting to be at this planning and negotiating stage whilst people look at their budgets and decide what they want from our photography workshops. There are so many vibrant communities here which have so much to give if only they had the chance.
The economy in some parts of South Wales is so far removed from that of London it’s crazy. Here you can buy a street of houses for the same price as a flat in West London. When the economy is low national government tends to claw back anything and everything from the provinces in order to protect the things it deems as important. Whilst London continues to thrive as a result of this policy the rest of the country is left to fend for itself. Forget the current economic mess, some parts of Wales didn’t have any economic investment after the last recession or the one before it. When large employment providers such as car plants, steel works or coal mines close it isn’t just the workers who suffer. Families have less money to spend in their local shops. Big name retailers pull out and there’s no trade left as a consequence. It’s a backwards situation which leaves some communities with little hope of recovery. With no money to move out or move on confidence is at rock bottom and poverty is at the top of the agenda.
This is where my workshops come in. I cannot fix the national economy or overthrow a national government with my cameras but I can work at helping people to get back their sense of hope and enhance their dignity. Sure, none of us have any money, yes it’s all unfair and everything is expensive but that shouldn’t stop anyone having a positive outlook on life. There are two ways to be rich, make more or desire less. The second option is the one I look to for inspiration. The best things in life are not things that you can buy. They are places and experiences. They are having fun and enjoying time with people. They are looking at hidden beauty and rediscovering ideas on hope and humanity. Through photography my participants are recording all these things and seeing the positivity in what is around them. This in turn encourages them to see what options are available to improve their own fortunes.
It’s a wonderful world it just depends on how you look at it. Here’s a daisy. It cost me nothing and it brings happiness. You can’t be sad at a daisy.