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Show and Tell Photo and the ‘How are you Feeling?’ campaign

2nd November 2021

Show and Tell Photo and the ‘How are you Feeling?’ campaign

AS teachers, parents and carers we are always trying to curtail the use of smartphones by our young people.

We worry about the impact of social media, that concern recently heightened by revelations confirming corporate algorithms are designed to put their profit ahead of our wellbeing.

But what if there were a way to fight back against the toxic culture of selfies? What if we could transform today’s ‘shoot and share’ habit into authentic storytelling? Is there even a way to morph our smartphones into a wellbeing tool?

Welcome to Show and Tell Photo!

But, what if there were a way to fight back against the toxic culture of selfies? What if we could transform today’s ‘shoot and share’ habit into authentic storytelling? Is there even a way to morph our smartphones into a wellbeing tool?

Show and Tell was devised in March 2020 during the first month of lockdown. It was created due to our deep concern that the nation’s young people had effectively been hidden from the world. Show and Tell Photo programme designers (The Photography Movement and CONSTANCE) have always researched mental wellbeing and we knew from the outset that lockdown would have negative consequences for many young people.

We set about devising a way to reach every single 10 to 18-year-old to help them identify and then express their emotions, two steps which are so vital in cognitive therapy. From those principles our ‘How are you feeling?’ campaign, programme and exhibition was born.

Our FREE therapeutic journey is as simple and entertaining as possible: watch online workshops by superstar photographers to learn about mindful photography;  practice the workshop tips and tasks and finally use those new mindful photography skills to visualise and share your emotions for the Show and Tell ‘How are you feeling?’ exhibition finale.

We focus too on the simplest and most readily available equipment – effectively anything that can take a digital picture! The series 1 winning photo ‘Sorrow’ by 10-year-old Adnan was taken on an old computer – grainy but magnificent.

The response to the first programme and campaign truly astounded us – nearly 22,000 images were sent to the exhibition by 10-18-year-olds. 83 were curated into an online exhibition and a final 15 put on billboards around the UK for millions to see. Together their photographs and words formed an extraordinary, emotional vision of young life in lockdown. Here are three breathtaking examples:

Feeling captured: FREE by Bradley Smith, 15

Feeling captured: OVERWHELMED by Anna Barber, 16

Feeling captured: JUMBLED by Max Mistry, 18

“We really need to encourage kids to express their emotions without judgement… I was impressed by how they channelled their emotions through photography. They were so vulnerable and honest in their work. Their ability to make beautiful art out of this ugly moment reinforces how powerful art can be” – RANKIN

Our Partner

Cisco has invested time and expertise into a project they believe can help children express and unburden emotions at a critical moment in their lives. Our Feedback Sessions for schools are exclusively hosted via their secure Webex system and have proved a powerful moment in the lives of students

“The children have been chuffed to bits that their ideas were spoken about in the Feedback Sessions. That photographers and adults outside school value what they have created, this is a really powerful idea and thought. The overall experience has been a really positive one and I would like to thank you and the team involved in making Show and Tell happen” – James McNulty – Head of Art, Belmont Mill Hill Prep School.

This year we know that young people need to keep expressing themselves – perhaps now more than ever. We are back for series 2 with four new online workshops, classroom feedback sessions with star photographers and once again we will ask our young people “How are you feeling?’ for the next national exhibition.

New for Series 2!

There are new elements this year – for example, our clear Show and Tell brand slogan #PhotographyForLifeNotLikes which informs everything we do. We created this slogan because we believe that we must reassess our visual language, heighten online emotional intelligence and take back the creative freedom to express who we truly are.

Our four latest workshop films by world-class photographers are supported by the work of Lizz Lewis, an accredited Clinical Psychologist. Watch the four new films themed around Street, Sport, Nature and Inner Beauty to see how Lizz has perfectly framed the power of creativity to support our mental health. How it can connect us, inspire us, give us purpose and meaning.

We are also delighted to announce the new Show and Tell live PHSE workshop programme developed in partnership with our Artistic Director for mental health, Daniel Regan, who will be joined by a guest for each session.

Held between March – June 2022 these expert sessions more deeply explore some of the most important topics affecting young mental health today – bullying, body image, stereotypes and relationships, ‘About me’ and mental health – each subject underscored by ‘online safety’.

Due to the sensitive nature of some of the content and the need to be age-appropriate in our approach, each session will be created for specific Key Stages. These workshops will be exclusively available to schools. Schools will be able to either join the sessions live or unlock them to view on-demand in their relevant classrooms.

Join us!

“The Show and Tell programme not only encourages pupils to start talking about Mental Health but it is improving pupils confidence, communication skills and understanding”  – Lisa M Ward – Head of House, Art and Photography teacher, Maesteg School

The Show and Tell programme is completely free of charge, totally flexible and can be used at home or at school. We welcome all 10 to 18-year-olds anywhere at any time to join us and learn lifelong skills to support their wellbeing. The toll taken by emotions left unexpressed in young people is well documented, the Show and Tell programme changes that – one picture at a time.

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