P O W E L L, W y o. - Students living in the Northwest College Photography Theme House believe you can tell a lot about a community by just looking at the hands of the people who live there. They're inviting area residents to have a look at the "Hands of Our Neighbors" during a calendar unveiling and silent auction at 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 29, at Topolo's Mexican Grill in Powell.
The students will sell their 2008 "Hands of Our Neighbors" calendar during the evening and conduct a silent auction to benefit Jeremy Thormahlen, a local resident with Hodgkin's Lymphoma.
In the calendar, students said they wanted to "showcase the hardworking nature of members of our society by telling stories photographically through the hands that work to help our community thrive."
According to the narrative included in the calendar, "our hands tell the story of the work we have done, and sometimes, the prices we have paid for doing them. Some hands are easily recognized as rough and hard-working; others may be delicate, but just as productive. This calendar focuses on many local professions that depend on, and ultimately change, our neighbors' hands."
During the opening, the calendars will be available for purchase at $5 each, and students will be on hand to sign them and talk about their photos and the experiences and insights gained from the project.
A silent auction of images reflecting the "Hands of our Neighbor's" theme will be held during the unveiling to benefit Thormahlen. Last year's calendar benefit attracted more than a hundred people who donated to the Reaching Hands Ranch through their purchases.
The photography theme house is a college course in which students play an integral part in developing the class curriculum. Participants further their photographic skills by reaching out to build relationships with a range of community service projects, ranging from gallery openings to photographic outings, while donating proceeds to photography-related organizations and local causes. The calendar production project also gives photo students an idea of a full, start-to-finish commercial project and the opportunity to see how the final project is received by the public.
Theme house students participating in this year's calendar project and benefit auction are Austin Siggins of Cody; and Montana students Andrew Peterson and Toni Snelling of Billings, Teala Starr of Ennis, and Melissa Wagner of Harrison; and Idaho students Blake Hendrix of Idaho Falls and Brian Kent of Horseshoe Bend; plus Danielle Fairchild of Canby, Minn.
They invite area residents to drop by after work Thursday, Nov. 29, to view the auction photographs and check out the calendar. Food and drink will be provided by Topolo's and 10 percent of proceeds from the night will go to the fund established to help Thormahlen with medical costs in his fight against Hodgkin's Lymphoma.