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Puerto Vallarta News NetworkNews from Around Banderas Bay | March 2009 

Photographer Nancy Grace Horton Completes Learning To See Educational Project in Mexico
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This is the second Learning To See photography project that Horton has directed in the little seaside town of Mayto, population 100.
Mayto, Jalisco, Mexico - Award-winning photographer and educator Nancy Grace Horton is pleased to announce the completion of one of her Learning To See community photography projects in the remote Pacific Coast village of Mayto, Mexico.

This is the second Learning To See project - in which students learn photography while documenting their environment - that Horton has directed in the little seaside town of Mayto, population 100.

This year's project was sponsored in part by the New Hampshire Cultural Commission and the University of California, Berkeley, which provided funds for equipment, travel and enlargements.

Working with fifteen children in Mayto's two-room schoolhouse, Horton first taught fundamental photographic skills and techniques. To learn basic concepts, the children used the sun, light-sensitive paper and various objects to make photogram sun prints.

Then the budding photographers - several of whom had never before used a camera - roamed their tiny town taking pictures of families, friends, and other important aspects of their lives.

The students took their cameras home after school and were encouraged to explore aspects of their daily life. The result was an informative documentation of their community. The diverse images they captured include scenes of the town, the ocean, a local brick factory, farm animals, and lots of family, friends and pets.

Horton had to travel several hours to have the film developed and printed so that finally the children could see and discuss their results. Each child had one or two of their images chosen to be enlarged, for which they wrote captions.

The children's teachers helped translate, as well as local bilingual resident, as the children were encouraged to discuss the details of the photographs in both English and Spanish.

At what was surely the first art opening ever in this little town, the children's work was exhibited at Mayto's largest public space, a store/bar/restaurant. Family and friends gathered to view and discuss the photographs. The young artists proudly spoke about their images, while toddlers, dogs, chickens, parents, and half a dozen tourists milled about.

Back home in Portsmouth, NH, Horton has arranged for the children's images to be displayed at the Portsmouth Public Library for the month of April. The images can also be seen on the blog for this project,

Horton says: "It is tremendously rewarding to work with kids from other cultures. All children seem so open and innocent in the way they experience their worlds. And when their culture is so different from my own, it is a thrill to learn about what is important to them, about what they value in life."

Nancy Grace Horton’s Learning To See projects bring students and community members together to learn photography and document their surroundings. Her most recent local Learning To See project is now being enhanced with the Portsmouth students who worked on a "A Day in the Life of Portsmouth." She will be helping these Portsmouth students to connect with the kids in Mexico via a blog, creating a connection with both language and images, in both Español and English. Horton will be giving a talk on her Learning To See projects on March 15th at the Griffin Museum of Photography.

A world-traveling freelance photographer, Nancy Grace Horton's photographs have appeared in numerous publications. They can be seen in her local bestselling book "Portsmouth," written by historian Laura Pope. A recent trip to Ghana with other local photographers resulted in a book of images inspired by the work of Paul Strand. Her work is often shown locally and was included in the Danforth Museum of Art's recent New England Biennial Photography and included in an exhibition at the Endicott College Archive Museum's show "Celebrate Arts Endicott 1939-2009", opening Friday June 5th from 4-6 pm. Her website, provides portfolios and news.

In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving
the included information for research and educational purposes • m3 © 2009 BanderasNews ® all rights reserved • carpe aestus