After 11 years of bringing you local reporting, the team behind the Vancouver Observer has moved on to Canada's National Observer. You can follow Vancouver culture reporting over there from now on. Thank you for all your support over the years!

Emily Carr Continuing Studies Photography Institute: photography, video, book-making

Greg Girard, House on Zixia Lu, Shanghai, 2005.
Photo by Greg Girard, House on Zixia Lu, Shanghai, 2005. Courtesy of the artist and the Monte Clark Gallery

Photography Institute – July 2012

The Documentary Tradition

Emily Carr Continuing Studies presents a selection of courses and events in photography, video and book-making focusing on the documentary tradition in the digital information age.

For more information on the courses offered as well as the incredible guest faculty teaching in this institute, please visit -

Johnathan Taggart, Children play around a hay bale at Whole Village    ecovillage, an intentional community and biodynamic farm near   Caledon, Ontario. From the series ' Salt & Earth',  August 2007

Free lectures and exhibitions!

Greg Girard is a Canadian photographer who works on assignment for publications such as National Geographic Magazine, Time, New York Times Magazine and Paris Match and continues to pursue long term book length projects.

Johnathan Taggart is an award-winning photojournalist based in Vancouver, Canada, specializing in social documentary, editorial photography, photographic tour diaries for musicians and visual advocacy for the Non-Profit sector.

As storytellers, photojournalists and documentary photographers, create images, both still and moving, they record the history of our culture, evoking the momentous and the everyday circumstances of contemporary life.

Awesome short courses!

This course is for photographers interested in self-publishing custom layout photo stories, monographs, or text-and-image books. Using publishing tools such as InDesign and Photoshop, you will produce a small ‘on demand’ book work with optimum control of content.

This course will engage you in a diverse series of studio and on-location scenarios, designed to challenge and hone the practical, technical and problem solving skills required to grow as a photographer. The course will concentrate on the practicalities of technique, and ideas developed in the work of contemporary photographers.

This course introduces you to advanced concepts in documentary photography. Through research and production of a non-fiction photo essay, you will encounter and discuss a spectrum of project related issues that often surround documentary practice: gaining access; shooting what you know; ethics; traditional and emerging venues for communicating ideas; and the concepts of ‘giving voice.’

Place, and the relationship of an individual or community to it, is fundamental to how we live. Our ideas of what is home and what is foreign usually start there. This course will assist you in developing a framework for observing, considering and photographing the social landscape. You will be introduced to contemporary and historic work, and will discuss making your own work in both familiar and unfamiliar environments. Techniques, strategies and responsibilities related to accessing a place or community will also be covered.

It is taken for granted that photography has the unflinching ability to create faithful depictions of reality. This course will offer you a chance to explore how direct observation, choice of subject and other more intuitive and creative photographic approaches can alter the predictable path of reality.

Speak up about this article on Facebook or Twitter. Do this by liking Vancouver Observer on Facebook or following us @Vanobserver on Twitter. We'd love to hear from you.