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Taking down of the Sir John A. MacDonald statue in Kingston

I have not posted since finishing my photojournalism program at Loyalist College. But I was happily surprised to get a call from Reuters on the morning of June 18 to cover the taking down of the Sir John A. MacDonald statue at City Park in Kingston. Special thanks to Alex Filipe, another Loyalist photojournalism grad, who sent Reuters my way to cover this event.

Taking down of Sir John A. MacDonald at Kingston’s City Park on June 18. Photo by Daniel Geleyn

The pictures below represent the mood at the event. There was an emotional press conference by indigenous people about what this event meant for them. There were also indigenous people expressing their joy with music and dance as they celebrated. On the other hand, there were also a few Kingstonians expressing their disagreements with this action.

Susan deLisle, accompanied by friends and representing indigenous people, gave an emotional press conference at 9:00 a.m. on June 18 in front of where the statue of the statue of Sir John A. MacDonald stood minutes earlier at City Park in Kingston. Photo by Daniel Geleyn
Indigenous people and their supporters were present in large numbers at the taking down of the statue of Sir John A. MacDonald at Kingston’s City Park on June 18. Photo by Daniel Geleyn
John Ryder-Burbidge, a long-time Kingston resident and veteran attended the taking down of the Sir John A. MacDonald statue at the City Park in Kingston on June 18. “What we are witnessing today is a triumph of activism of a minority triumphing over the democratic wishes of the majority,” he says. Despite the large number of indigenous people celebrating at the site, there were also a number of Kingstonians that were there to show their disappointments in the decision of the City of Kingston to take this monument down. Photo by Daniel Geleyn

I must say that attending this event has allowed me to reflect a bit more on the events of the last few weeks in Canada related to the residential schools.

There is no doubt that Canada has made some bad decisions in the past that have affected some communities in a terrible way. Canada is not perfect and we need to recognize, learn from, and grow from our past mistakes. However, we also have to put these mistakes in their proper context. It is too easy to judge past actions against today’s reality.

We, as individual Canadians, also need to learn from each other as so many of us come from different background. My own roots are French Canadian and European and that makes it more difficult for me to understand what Canada’s indigenous people have been through. I must therefore make up for that lack of knowledge by listening better while showing compassion for all points of view expressed. As Canadians, our diversity is a strength but it is also a challenge. We must do better at expressing our diversity as a strength and not let it divide us.

I therefore cannot agree about this being “minority triumphing over the democratic wishes of the majority”. Most Canadians are members of some minority in one form or another. We must learn to develop solutions that respects everyone’s aspirations. Of course, that is not easy, but it is what makes Canada what it is.

I still believe that Canada is one of the best countries in the world to live, no matter where your roots might be from. Yes, we have made mistakes along the way, but we have also been very successful in developing a prosperous and peaceful nation. Let’s all learn from our past mistakes, even better, let’s learn from others’ mistakes, and improve on what we have already achieved together.

First week of placement at Frontenac News

Our classes ended last week with a portfolio review of our work of the last two years. I’m happy with my current portfolio but of course, it is always a work in progress.

I have now started a placement at Frontenac News. It is a small community paper that publishes a newsprint once a week but it is also present as an online publication at http://www.frontenacnews.ca

My first article was on the significant upgrades being done at the Frontenac Community Arena. The renovations and upgrades were well due as the building was built in the 1970’s. But the result should be well worth the wait.

Check out the article on their website or in my Tearsheet tab on the website. I’m working on the next couple articles for Frontenac News so stay tuned for more.

GODFREY, Ont. (29/03/2021) – Tim Laprade, the Arena & Recreation Supervisor for the Township of South Frontenac, is surveying the progress being made to the work being done at the Frontenac Community Arena. It is currently undergoing significant infrastructure improvements. It was built nearly 50 years ago and was in dire need of update. The renovations are expected to be completed by the end of June, well ahead of its re-opening in September. In addition to the needed improvements to the refrigeration system, users will be able to enjoy many upgrades that will improve their experience. Photo by Daniel Geleyn

A year of COVID-19

March 2021 marks the one year anniversary of when our lives changed due to the ongoing pandemic. With more immunizations being administered, we definitely see the light at the end of the tunnel but we cannot let our guards down now, not after all this.

The other half of our photojournalism class published their last Pioneer yesterday. They had the excellent idea to commemorate the one year of COVID-19 with a story called “A look back at COVID” which included a number of pictures taken throughout the year. I was glad to have four of my images as part of that picture story.

Two of those images were published earlier but the other two, which represent the earlier part of that year, were never published so here they are below. It is certainly interesting to look back as to what we have gone through in the last year, while imagining easier times ahead.

The day the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the pandemic, 11 March 2020, Loyalist College was holding its Career Fair at the school gym. Little did we know at the time that just two days later the college would essentially be closed for in-class learning for the next year. Photo by Daniel Geleyn
On March 31, 2020, many people were working or attending school from home. Daniel Geleyn from Kingston, Ont., a photojournalism student at Loyalist College took advantage of videoconferencing technology to attend online classes with his fellow students. The new rules resulted in many classes moving online. Photo by Daniel Geleyn

Our last Pioneer

Yesterday, our last Pioneer was published. It was a good edition with some fresh news from our first year students, an article on a prestigious nomination from a graduate of the program for a World Press Award, a multimedia piece and more.

A number of the articles are from yours truly. I was glad to be able to try new things in the edition as well. For one article on theatre plays being worked on in Kingston, I put a collage of multiple pictures together. It’s not something we do often but I think it worked well in this case. I am also particularly proud of the article on sheep farming, mostly because of the nice images with the article. Normally we publish only one image per story but the three images in this case really add to the narrative.

I hope you enjoy this read.

Click to access march11photojournalismpioneer-4.pdf

More Images Published

Last week, I was published again, this time in a new format for me.

Global News in Kingston did a story on March 3 for Easter Seals, since March is Easter Seals month. The purpose was to promote Easter Seals but part of the story was about the Easter Seals Regatta that was held last summer to raise funds. I produced images for that event and I was happy to let them use these images for the promotion.

Continue reading “More Images Published”