This project – “In My Own Eyes” – gives Aboriginal youth (in Grades 6 to 8 ) a chance to share their stories with people across the province. They also learn the role photography can have in storytelling and social change.
Aboriginal youth, both on-reserve and urban, are mentored in their communities by professional Aboriginal photographers.
Over the course of three days, the mentors teach youth basic photographic history, theory, techniques and equipment.
The participants learn that photography can be a new and slower way of seeing.
They also learn how to use the mediums of colour, shape, pattern and texture to create a narrative. The youth use digital cameras in the local environment to try this new way of seeing and to tell their stories.”
Other highlights of the “In My Own Eyes” project are as follows:
- The communities that participated in this project include:
- M’Chigeeng First Nation,
- Ojibways of Onigaming,
- Moose Cree First Nation,
- Six Nations of the Grand River First Nation
- Urban Aboriginal youth in the cities of Fort Frances, Toronto and North Bay
- Mentors were assisted on-reserve by a member of the Ontario First Nations Young Peoples Council (Chiefs of Ontario), and in urban settings by a member of the Ontario Federation of Indian Friendship Centres’ Youth Council.
- 43 percent of Aboriginal people – First Nation, Inuit and Métis – in Ontario are less than 25 years old.
- Planet IndigenUs is a major international cultural initiative of Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre in partnership with the Woodland Cultural Centre in Brantford.
Today is National Aboriginal Day!
To celebrate National Aboriginal Day, “In My Own Eyes” – an exhibit of photos and stories by Aboriginal youth – is launched today as two events in tandem:
- at the CN Tower, Skyquest Theatre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada at 10 a.m. for the media and
- as an online gallery wherein more than 50 Aboriginal youth are showcasing their images and stories