By her 14th birthday, Chloe had witnessed first hand the social deprivation, sporadic violence and brutal turf wars that were part and parcel of life on her estate. It was against this background she came in touch with ‘Take Aim. Shoot!’. She describes her experience of the programme.
“‘Take Aim. Shoot!’ relates to my life. It let me meet up with other young people who are similar to me and could relate with me in my hard and good times, and it felt good learning together”.
“At the beginning I wasn't too interested because photography is not something I wanted to do or learn. But I was wrong, taking part made me understand how I could observe where I live in a positive way. It was fun and educational and something I can now share with my friends.”
“I learnt a lot about cameras too - aperture, shutter speed and ISO, I didn't even know they existed in a camera”. The project focused on my using the camera to document my estate and the surrounding area, which I am now continuing to do as a further six month project.”
“Photography has taught me how to be patient and focus to get the result I want, I now have a camera that I can use to document and hopefully in the future become a photographer.”
As a young teenager, Brian came in touch with some of the worst aspects of growing up on an inner London Estate.
Although he never carried a gun himself, he knew friends who did, justifying the weapons as protection in the estate wars known as ‘beef’. In these, simply being in the wrong place at the wrong time could lead to beatings and serious injury.
Brian had had a number of run ins with the police (fortunately avoiding prison) when a chance meeting led to a big change in his life.
Brian, himself takes up the story.
'I got involved with Positive View’s ‘Take Aim. Shoot!’ project through Dennis Gyamfi, who is an Ambassador for Positive View. I saw him walking through my estate and I approached him to have a conversation.
He started telling me about a photography programme he was running. This interested me as I had been told I took really good photos even though I knew nothing about things like apertures, ISOs or shutter speeds.
Through the workshop I gained a very good understanding of these operations and I have been taking photos ever since.
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