Close to Our Community
While we’re always excited about what’s happening within our walls, we’re also committed to taking our love of photography and film out into the community, specifically into schools to spark that passion in the next generation. From exposing youth to the power of self-expression to launching projects that tackle the tough issues of today, our goal is to give back in a way that doesn’t check off a box, but that has a positive impact immediately and in the future. Simply based on the work created through our outreach programs, we like to think we’re achieving that goal.
PAST PROJECTS /
LITERACY THROUGH PHOTOGRAPHY
Thanks to a Unite Charlotte grant and a CrossRoads Corporation partnership, the first LTP/TLF program took place in 2017 at the Grier Heights Community Center. The students were provided cameras to document their lives around themes related to family, friends, and community.
BEYOND THE FRAME
Beyond the Frame is a year-long program graciously funded by Wells Fargo. The aim of the program is to help participants achieve their goals of artistic growth and help them expand their technical breadth, all while creating a tight-knit community of female photographers in the process.
MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE
In 2007, 36 Charlotte students traveled to New Orleans to document the Hurricane Katrina reconstruction effort with their cameras. By surveying the destruction and interviewing survivors, they were able to shape their own thoughts and feelings about the disaster.
For this North Carolina-centric photography project, students from Olympic and Vance High Schools boarded a bus for an unforgettable journey across the state. Ultimately they created memorable pieces, all while making new friends in Currituck and Columbus Counties.
MY FAMILY, OUR STORIES
Using photography and film, students from high schools in the Charlotte area told their singular stories of family and immigration in this annual project. Participating schools included Vance, South Mecklenburg, East Mecklenburg, West Mecklenburg, and Hopewell High Schools.
Through creating conceptual photographs and stop motion animations, students explored their own sense of identity, as well as the stereotypes they encounter on a daily basis.
The Light Factory empowered students to create compelling photographic art and poetry about the environment. During this artistic journey they tested water quality, saw a landfill, and worked together as a team.
CUE THE SUN
Students from the Behailu Academy after-school program were The Light Factory’s hosts for the summer. The students collaborated to design a large-scale mural made up of tiny cyanotype squares, as well as larger murals with the students as subjects in the print.
WE ARE CLT
In anticipation of the 2012 Democratic National Convention, students were inspired to use photography to represent the Charlotte community in an extremely personal and honest way. Students shot everyone from their family members to the people they thought were marginalized in our community. Portraits were featured in The Light Factory’s gallery and on digital billboards all around Center City.