The Good Life Photovoice

Photovoice is a technique that has participants take photos in response to a prompt, reflect individually on the meanings behind their photos, and share their photos and their insights to discover common themes. The British photographer and filmmaker Zana Briski used Photovoice to powerful effect in her documentary Born into Brothels, where the lives of prostitutes in Kolkata’s red light district are seen through the eyes of their children, to whom Briski gave cameras.

We’ll be using Photovoice to connect course texts and themes with our world today. These are the questions that will guide what images you capture and share.

How has the pandemic changed your ideas about what makes for happiness?

How has the pandemic affected your relation to others?

How has the pandemic redefined what’s needed to live the “good life”?

Using your phone or camera, take pictures–in your community, on your streets, at places people gather (or don’t), in your house–that reflect these questions for you. 

Login to this site and click on your named page to edit it. I’ve created placeholder fields on your page. Replace placeholders (My Title, Your Quotation, My Caption, etc.) with your choices. To upload your image, click the current image (Hawthorne up to no good), select Replace, and then Upload from your computer. Each time you make an edit, make sure to click the Update button in the upper right-hand corner of the screen. You can Preview your page too.

Create a title that reflects a big takeaway from your work. 

Choose one direct quotation from an IH text that illuminates the common theme of your images. In other words, let one of our texts lend its voice to yours. 

 In 4-5 sentences, caption one of your images. Your caption should address the following standard Photovoice questions:

What do you ​s​ee here?

What is really ​h​appening?

How does this relate to ​o​ur lives?

W​hy does this problem or strength exist?

What can we ​do about it?

If you’d like to add more images to your page, click the + button under your captioned image (Add Block). Click Browse All and choose one of the following gallery formats: Carousel, Masonry, or Stacked. Then follow the instructions to add images to your gallery.

Come to class prepared to share your thinking on the following questions about the image you captioned:

Can you tell us about the story behind your photograph?

What was going through your mind when you took this photograph?

Can you tell us how your photograph captures the themes of the activity?

If the picture is a fantasy or positive vision of the future, what is blocking this dream from becoming a reality?

If the picture is a critique of our present moment, or negative vision of the future, what can be done to shift this?