Saturday, 24 January 2015
A Capturing Day ...
We were welcomed by brilliant weather this morning. Usually it is said that Chennai’s climate is Hot, Hotter, Hottest, but today was a pleasant cool morning with a bit of thunder showers that started our day fresh and energetic.
Having the entire campus to ourselves, we took the opportunity to work on our pathway exercises outdoors in the sand and shade of the trees all around us. The pathways is mainly an activity to get the children moving and also start perceiving and working with each other in a space without having to ask for space or feel insecure about their space. It is also a great way of accepting everyone around oneself and also the space you are in. We added a little bit more of a challenge taking the wet sand after the rain, to try and mark our pathways and also count our steps to really understand each one’s way. As usual, it does no matter what age, sand is a playful material for everyone.
While being holed up in a little room waiting for the rain to subside, the girls worked on a few more rhythm exercises, trying to make as many sounds as possible using their limbs and sounds. It was challenging as none of them have been ever exposed to thinking of such sort. They were shy initially to do more than clapping, but over time they started innovating on the sounds.
After about 2 hours of warm up, we settled down to knowing more about each other. Everyone was divided into pairs and given the task of drawing portraits of each other and also finding out each other’s stories to exchange with the rest of the group. Some very interesting faces were perceived through the exercise.
Post lunch we went deeper into the subject of getting to know each other by making them now look at one distinctive feature of their partner and draw that feature in more detail. Once again many were just not happy but the idea that we were trying to work on was that usually if we leave our perception to our eyes only we do not get to understanding a subject better. We also asked them this time to try and find out a little bit about each other’s cities and towns, so once again a little more information can be exchanged of where they come from.
The stories and information we got from all was amazing, from fish curry rice of Goa to Marina beach of Chennai.
The evening session had Kaushik Jay, come in to introduce them to photography. Initially the group was shy, as suddenly after an entire day and a half of being amongst girls and ladies, a male member amongst their midst saw them close down. So when he started the workshop by asking how many like photography there were only 6 hands, but once he began showing them a few photos to give them a little bit what photography is about, and suddenly every hand was up after looking at pictures he showed them.
We just had time to introduce the girls to the basics of a camera. Divided into 5 groups, each of them have a different make and style of camera but there was a lot of excitement in them all.
The evening ended with all of us watching a brilliant production by the students of a local dance school – Chettinad Shree Hari Vidyalayam. It was a two and a half our production but each of the girls sat mesmerised and amazed at the production, the quality of dance and mainly because it was completely performed by children of similar age group.
Today was a day that captured them all, through their portraits, through their cameras and then by the dance performance.