This post has been a long time coming, as with most things that I finally manage to accomplish. I first discovered the International Guild of Visual Peacemakers (IGVP) about a year ago. I had just made the move to Melbourne from New Zealand, and I was beginning to seriously reconsider the direction I was headed with my photography. I wasn’t really getting the satisfaction I had previously from the wedding and portrait work I had been doing in Wellington, and to be honest, I was struggling to put the effort in that I felt my clients deserved. About the same time, I discovered this thing that has become known as ‘humanitarian’ photography through reading a book by David duChemin, a photographer who has become one of my heroes. As I began to read, research, and learn more about this intriguing specialty, I knew immediately and without a doubt that I had just discovered my calling, if there’s such a thing.
One of my discoveries of that not-so-little investigation was the IGVP, a rapidly-growing community of photographers, videographers, cinematographers, and no doubt many other -graphers. “We are visual communicators devoted to peacemaking and breaking down stereotypes by displaying the beauty and dignity of various cultures around the world.” In a world where the vast majority of the visual media that is fed to us daily is heavily biased and intentionally controversial, the community of IGVP aims to be a growing voice of peace, unity, tolerance, understanding, and inspiration.
In the short time that IGVP has existed, the community has grown dramatically, and I have been lucky enough to meet some incredibly talented and inspirational people who share my passion for using their powers for good. I consider it a privilege to be part of this community, and I look forward to what the future holds for IGVP and the work being done by its members.
A special thanks to co-founderÂ Mario Mattei, the heart and mind behind IGVP, for his dedication and hard work towards this community.
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