By Vanessa Broadbent
This week grade 9 and ten photography students of South Okanagan Secondary School are showcasing a side of Oliver that’s rarely captured: its local businesses.
Starting with No Frills and Hair Friends on Monday, the class is spending time each day this week photographing various businesses around town. The best pictures will then be compiled and displayed in the stores, along with the names of each student photographer.
“We were looking at being stuck inside for the next few weeks so I was thinking about ways to get them out into the community but still in a warm space,” she said.
“Any time we get out of the classroom they love it. There’s lots of vibrant colours and cool things to take photos of.”
For the rest of the week students in McVicar’s class are photographing Al’s Bakery, Flower Fantasy and Gifts, Ace Building Centre, the Oliver Library and Shopper’s Drug Mart.
Each business will be given the best photos taken, mounted on black poster paper and ready for display.
“It’s a good way for students to get out into the community and it’s a nice way for their artwork to be seen by people who probably wouldn’t otherwise see it,” McVicar said. “And I think it helps the businesses too because of course parents and students will want to visit the businesses where those are.”
Photographing inside a business presents different challenges than working outside would, and McVicar is using that to her advantage, teaching students techniques that are applicable in a commercial setting.
“They’re taking photos that represent the essence of what that store is about. We’re not taking pictures of customers of signage, we’re focussing more on the products that are being sold at each place and getting artsy photos where we look at colour and texture, point of view and framing, that sort of thing.”
Currently, the project is only scheduled to be this week, but McVicars is currently looking for additional businesses to participate to continue for a second week.