_stringing thoughts together

Thinking about our world and the people in it inspires most of us to action one way or another. When that action is carefully designed and visualised, things can get exciting because we all like to see evidence of really good ideas.

Thinking, made visual. Whether a lovely family moment, a brilliant gig or theatre piece, or immensely satisfying work collaborations, what thoughts do you have or experience right now that are turning into something physical, practical, real – visual?

Sometimes our thoughts are small and quiet, and are expressed as such. Amplified, they can become much more, and hold people’s gaze magnetically.
So for a few weeks this month, I travelled to Cambodia and Thailand to support a charity—Freedom Stones—through volunteering my photography skills to help them tell their own story of some hardcore thinking made beautifully visual.
That people have thoughts and do something about them is one of the simple reasons I decided to practise photography alongside my graphic design and illustration. Visual story-telling about people who make extraordinary things happen in our world can be very powerful, and its impact to inspire helps me appreciate how valuable a big, visual punch is in conveying really complex levels of thought.

Freedom Stones is a human rights charity which generates employment for young people in a jewellery-making business. This employment helps those young people avoid being trafficked illegally (where we were, from Cambodia across the border into to Thailand) into the sex industry, or as construction workers.

This project is a very good bit of thinking, and the outcome can be seen clearly, not just in the jewellery design, but in the faces of those involved in the programme who are working their way with dignity out of poverty. Hopefully, my photographs will help Freedom Stones tell the story of this work and generate support to make it sustainable.

Now back at my desk in Bristol, I have a bit of decompressing to do and eagerly return to our day-to-day thinking and visualising! Trips like this always make me even more fond of home, family, colleagues and all our collected plans and shared projects.

A small blue bead—like a tiny thought—threaded together with red beads and clear beads and black beads, to create a sort of visual evidence that our combined power to thread together our thinking and visualise that can put rich oil on the earth’s axis.

Good thinking in minds and hearts, turned visual.

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