The Arctic Image Festival is trying to take photos beyond Facebook and into hard-copy, high-quality prints.
This weekend, the group is holding its fourth annual event, during which it will show off a range of prints by Northern photographers and provide workshops with photography professionals.
“It’s a way to show local photographers’ work and work from anywhere in the Arctic,” explained Elizabeth Kolb, the event’s coordinator.
Photos will be strung up around the Midnight Sun Complex. The Arctic Image Festival office, located on Mackenzie Road in the Mac Travel Building, will be displaying exhibitions and providing photography workshops.
David Stewart, from the Inuvialuit Communications Society, said the group is trying to bring more attention to some of the gems in the North, such as prolific photographer Kristian Binder, whose images and drone use have made his work a regular staple on Inuvik Facebook pages.
“He’s not the reason we’re doing something like this, but he’s the type of person we really want to support,” said Stewart.
The group is also excited to display some of its archives, hoping people can recognize relatives and times from the past.
With a donated space in the Mac Travel Building and a high-quality printer, the Arctic Image Festival is hoping to move beyond this weekend’s event to provide a year-round service to photographers.
“In a community like this, there are all these photos that are just sitting on people’s computers and (in their) basements, and it’s so nice to get them out and put them on a wall and get some fresh eyes on them,” said Stewart.
People who entered the photo contest for this weekend’s event will have their work printed for free, and anyone who recognizes a family member or would like an archived shot can also get a print for free. In the future, the Arctic Image Festival will be looking to charge people a small fee to make professional-quality prints with its machinery.
“It can print wider than my arm span, and that’s just the short width,” said Kolb.
“The goal of this place is to help revitalize downtown and have a creative centre where people can meet, print photos and maybe this will be more than just a weekend-a-year event.”
The event runs from Friday to Sunday this weekend. Workshops will take place all day Saturday. Find a full schedule at arcticimagefestival.com.