MA inspiration : Alain Laboile summer of the fawn

MA inspiration : Alain Laboile summer of the fawn

21.06.2019

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{ Falmouth University MA in photography – CRJ }

In June 2019 I started my MA with Falmouth university as part of an accredited education programme.

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As part of my research I have been looking at photographers who’s work resonates with me and my practice, either in ethos or aesthetically, I’ve really appreciated the fact that I have not only managed to find one or two rare examples, but quite a few photographers who are producing work akin to mine, photographers who have chosen alternative education paths for their families, and are, or have in the past been documenting those lives as their art, and are showing the world that there IS another way, indeed, another truly beautiful way of not only educating but of living. I say appreciate, because when you live a path that falls outside of the societal “norm” , it can at times feel isolating. Everyone thinks your beliefs are a knock at what they are doing, so you tend not to talk about it too much with people that you aren’t quite sure what their response will be, for fear of either offending, or having to get in to a debate, or the worst, my children being made to feel like performing monkeys when they are methodically questioned on whether they know XYZ that will of been taught in schools by their age. Infact, most people are just genuinely interested in what it is that you do, and how it works. Interestingly, I find teachers the most accepting and interested usually, infact, there is actually a huge amount of teachers, who have chosen to home educate their own children on the online forums to do with home education, which should, I suppose, speak for itself.

So, I came across the work of Alain Laboile and ordered his book “Summer of the Fawn” published by KEHRER .

https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/3868288953/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_asin_title_o00_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1

Laboile lives in Bordeaux , France with his wife and their six children who are home educated. He, like Niki Boon , another inspiring photographer who I wrote about in my last blog post, captures his children’s everyday lives as home educated children. Alain, wrote about his philosophy behind his life, and photographs in an interview with Lensscratch on Jan 22nd 2019. He said “I have documented the life of my big family on a daily basis since 2006. My work depicts the sweet madness of childhood, the intrinsic relations of siblings and their close interaction with nature. These little snapshots of simple life are a day-to-day chronicle of living together. Our daily life is a sweet quietude, but also a bubbling, a permanent emulation in which each individual, rich in his own identity, helps to preserve the balance of the family nucleus. Homeschooled, our children live the most relaxed life ever, freed from educational dictates.”

( Smithson, Aline. ALAIN LABOILE.  SUMMER OF THE FAWN.  Lensscratch. 22.01.2019 . http://lenscratch.com/2019/01/alain-laboile-summer-of-the-fawn/ Accessed 21.06.2019 )

I am still researching, trying to discover if the children are, or were “unschooled” , it certainly appears that way from the images, however, as a ‘part-time unschooler’ I could just be seeing , what I want to see, almost seeing your own lives, reflected back at you, which I think people do a lot with photography. Just because I see it, it doesn’t necessarily mean they adopted an unschooling education technique, but I certainly wouldn’t be surprised if that were indeed the case.

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I’m thinking a definition here of unschooling would be a good idea.

Sandra Dodd says this about unschooling “I, as the unschooling parent, TRUST that learning is happening with each activity because children are learning all the time. I don’t place any more value in an hour of my child reading a book than I do in an hour of him playing on online computer game or videogame. It’s all learning. It’s all wonderful. It’s my job as an unschooling parent to recognize the learning that is taking place, see its value, and encourage my child’s passions. ( Dodd, Sandra. Sandradodd.com . Definitions of unschooling http://sandradodd.com/unschool/definition.html  accessed 21.06.2019)

And here is a really, truly, awful robotic video on you tube about what unschooling is, but it’s points are spot on …

                                                           

 

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FRONT COVER : THE SUMMER OF THE FAWN : ALAIN LABOILE

I was especially drawn to the compositions of his images , and the way they feel like he was literally involved in the actual moment, not a spectator, but someone living and breathing these scenes, who paused time, mid game to take his shot, and then time unfroze, and he carried on in this beautiful idyllic life. It allows the viewer to ‘jump into his place’ and feel like they experiencing his world for just a moment.

MA inspiration : Alain Laboile summer of the fawn

MA inspiration : Alain Laboile summer of the fawn

T~F~:

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