Photo project takes regional snapshot

Life Exposure: Images of Community captures a snapshot of life in the Bulkely Valley.

Life Exposure: Images of Community captures a snapshot of life in the Bulkely Valley.

The Bulkley Valley Community Arts Council’s latest endeavour, a partnership between the group, Positive Living North and the Smithers Art Gallery, asked photographers to capture the essence of life in the region through a series of questions.

Participants were asked to respond to four questions through photos: How do I see my community? How is my culture alive? How do I see myself? and What brings me joy?

The people who submitted photos for the project were as varied as the Bulkley Valley landscape, said Miriam Colvin, with the Bulkley Valley Community Arts Council. There were high school students, immigrants new to Canada and an entire church congregation that made a submission as a group.

“One of the things I’ve learned about our community through this project was that people are really engaged in their communities,” Colvin said.

“And that can mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people.”

Thanks to grant funding, cameras were available for those who do not own the equipment.

At the August 15 project deadline, 165 entries had been received, with some still trickling in.

All submissions are now included in an online gallery, viewable at, and many will also be selected to be displayed at two art shows, at Misty River Gallery in Hazelton on Oct. 4 and at the Smithers Art Gallery Oct. 11.

Because of the interest, submissions for inclusion in the online gallery have been extended to October.

The amount of thought entrants put into their photos was inspiring, Colvin said.

“There’s a real thoughtfulness that went into this project,” she said. “People were so reflective on the questions, some had a hard time answering them because they were putting so much thought into them.”

Life Exposure: Images of Community was inspired by a photography project sponsored and organized by Positive Living North, called Reflections of Hope, where disposable cameras were handed out to the low-income population and the best photos were chosen to be a part of a calendar.