Schoolchildren from remote academic institutes interested in photography saw one of their dreams come true when they had the chance to exhibit their shots at a recent exhibition.
This they managed largely because of the help extended to them by a group of students who have formed a company by the name Picturematrix Pvt Ltd. The exhibition was held at the JD Perera Gallery last week where schoolchildren from eight academic institutes showcased their photographs.
Picturematrix is a company that specializes in event photography. But what makes them different from other photographers who do event photography is that they are still students of photography and don’t restrict themselves to covering events only. These photographers take a lot of effort to study the art side of photography too. Public Relations Manager Tharindra Liyanage speaking to the Nation said that the company often conducts shows and exhibitions to raise funds for this type of humanitarian work like giving the less affluent a chance to do photography.
According to Tharindra, the recent photo exhibition was titled ‘My voice is photography’. The funds needed for the exhibition were raised by conducting a musical show last year titled ‘Fusion 16.’
“We got some funds from sponsors and from the gate. Then we trained the students by conducting workshops and made them ready to have their exhibition. The idea is to see some of these members take to photography as their profession in the future,” said Tharindra, a 17-year-old arts student at Devi Balika Vidyalaya Colombo who serves as the Public Relations Manager of this company.
Members are enrolled at the company by checking their skills in photography. Then they are sent to follow courses in photography conducted by veteran photographers. These members then start contributing to society by covering events at their schools.
This time around as many as eight schools selected from towns such as Trincomalee, Horana, Galle, Baddegama and Kurunegala were presented with cameras. Photographic societies were also started in these schools. Each school was presented with a camera and dry box.
The members of Photomatrix are also sent abroad for competitions. Tharindra is the one who has performed best and won the second place at the competition titled World Photo Exhibition which was conducted by the Federation of Art Photography in 2015. She also won third place at the SAARC Photo Exhibition which was held in Luknow, India.
“Members get an opportunity to represent the country at international exhibitions,” she said.
Photomatrix is headed by CEO Shamika Miduranga while Apsara Liyanage functions as director and treasurer.
Members of Photomatrix don’t restrict themselves to event photography. They also do wildlife photography. Tharindra said that the company chargers a professional fee to cover events, functions and do event planning. But there are occasions when the company might cover an event free, especially if the event takes the form of a blood donation campaign.
The ages of members in the company range between 15-30 and are either schoolchildren or undergraduates. These members take great pleasure in the humanitarian tasks they undertake. They have not only given a ‘vision’ for students from less affluent schools who fancy in photography but in some instances it has been like giving them a third eye.
Pics by Sassanda Liyanarachchi