Selfies: Exploring the Self & Body Through Photography & Writing

Selfies: Exploring the Self & Body Through Photography & Writing with educator, activist, and performance artist Angie River, MA TLA. Four weeks: April 6 – April 27.

To pay by check, send a check to Transformative Language Arts Network, P.O. Box 442633, Lawrence, KS 66044.

Member rate – $140

Non-member rate – $160

In this age of social media people often have their phones out snapping photos of themselves and documenting their daily lives through pictures. How often, though, do we stop to really look at these digital narratives and explore what they mean to us? This course uses a series of paired photography “selfies” and writing prompts to explore our identities and bodies. We will investigate the ways we view ourselves, and how we present ourselves to others. There will be ‘homework’ of selfies and writing for participants to complete during weeks one, two, and three. Participants will have the opportunity to share this work with other participants if they so choose!

photo (6)Week One will include a discussion around ‘selfies’ as a way of learning more about ourselves. We will also investigate how the combination of photography and writing can be used for self-exploration. At-home work will focus on what we present to the world, our ‘external’ selves.

Week Two will include a discussion of the at-home work from week one. We will also talk about the body, photographing the body, and writing about the body.

Week Three will include a discussion of the at-home work from week two. We will talk about personality and how we capture our personalities and emotions both in pictures and using words.

Week Four will be have an opportunity for participants to share the work they did over the prior three weeks. We will also discuss ways in which to continue this work and the facilitator will provide resources for further reading and exploration. We will also talk about the process of revising and editing, both the ‘selfies’ and the writing.

Format: This is an online class. Each week, a new week will open full of resources, reflections, discussion questions, and writing prompts. Students should expect to spend 3-5 hours per week perusing resources and readings, answering a discussion question, engaging in several writing prompts, and responding to peers’ work. From our interactions, we sustain a welcoming and inspiring community together.

Who Should Take This Class: Anyone interested in exploring more about themselves through writing! You will need a camera of any sort – this can be a phone, iPod, basic digital camera, or something more fancy – but do not need any background in photography!

Cost: $140 TLAN members; $160 non-members.

Angie River is an educator, activist, and performance artist. If asked to describe herself, Angie would say she is a queer, disabled, glitter-obsessed, body-loving, craft-doing, community-seeking, deep-thinking person. Angie performs in and produces shows in various genres including spoken word, performance art, and burlesque under the production name ‘Rebels on Stage.’ Angie’s passion is the body and stories we tell through and with our bodies. She believes that through telling the stories of our bodies we can overcome shame, build community, and create new possibilities in our lives! Learn more about Angie on her blog, Nitty-Gritty Nakedness.