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GUIDELINES

Welcome to the guidelines for the Picture your Story (PicS) Toolkit!

These guidelines accompany the picture talk and storytelling exercises in the PicS Toolkit. Here you can learn how to use these exercises, along with some tips & tricks that will help you deliver a great and effective workshop.

These guidelines consist of the following to PicS:

If you want to learn more about the theories behind this Toolkit – in the fields of picture talk, storytelling, identity work, setting up a workshop and/or youth work in different European national context – you can download our Foundation Bricks publication on this website.

How to use the Toolkit?

How to use the Toolkit?​​

In this chapter we will give you some assistance in how to use the Toolkit. You can read about the different phases of a workshop and how you can apply the different exercises connected to the picture sets in these different phases.

As we pointed out already, all exercises are labelled accordingly. Above the description of the exercises, you find the labels referring to the phase the exercise fits in best, the picture set that should be used with the exercise, the category of the exercise and its duration. With all this information it should be fairly simple to design the perfect workshop.

Consider the labels as a support in setting up your workshop and not as a mandatory structure to follow. Feel the freedom to tailor the workshop to your needs and – even more important – to the needs of the participants.

Set-up of a workshop

A clear and logical build up is the best recipe for a successful workshop leading to the results you are aiming for. To give you some guidance, we describe several aspects (see the scheme below) that can help you build a strong structure in which the exercises you have in mind fit and help you reach the goals you have set. In the following paragraphs all parts of this set-up scheme will be explained step by step.

Phase

Exercise categories

Best used picture set

Team building Ice breakers
Trust building
Contact making
Collaboration
Energy
Flats
POV’s
Triggering creativity Creativity Flats
POV’s
Postcards
Press Pictures
Triggering awareness Personal development Flats
Postcards
Press Pictures
Finding common ground Memory triggering Postcards
Press Pictures
Closing Closing Postcards

Be aware that you can never fully plan a workshop beforehand, as the dynamics in the group are an important aspect to consider. You can only feel this dynamic as soon as you start the workshop. So always keep in mind that you have to consider quite some flexibility, and that you must be prepared to modify the program on the spot. That’s why the lines in the scheme are dotted, not fully dividing the different fields but instead allowing a flexible framework within which to plan and execute.

Different phases

We distinguish five different phases in the workshop. Regardless of the time available, all five phases must be present in the design of your workshop, though you can decide to shorten or extend them.

The five phases are:

  1. Team building
  2. Triggering creativity
  3. Triggering awareness
  4. Finding common ground
  5. Closing

Click on these phases to learn more about them.

The phases follow each other logically. However, following the structure of the phases is not mandatory, sometimes switching between phases, mainly phase 2 and 3, may be beneficial for the level of the workshop.

Description of the Picture sets

As a part of this Toolkit you find four sets of pictures. Based on profound research to how different pictures are perceived in different situations and to how youth nowadays interprets pictures and uses picture talk to communicate, we developed these four sets. All sets serve a different purpose and can be used in the different phases of the workshop. As a part of this Toolkit you find four sets of pictures. Based on profound research to how different pictures are perceived in different situations and to how youth nowadays interprets pictures and uses picture talk to communicate, we developed these four sets. All sets serve a different purpose and can be used in the different phases of the workshop.

See in depth description about the power of pictures in the Foundation Bricks

The four sets are the following:

  1. Flats – We consider ‘flats’ to be the kind of pictures you find on Instagram-profiles.
  2. POVs – Pictures taken from the first person’s ‘Point of View’ often with a part of the body of the main character in it.
  3. Postcards – Pictures that could be described as postcards; they don’t literally have to be one. They often have multiple layers in it, for example an actor, a scenery, an action, an object, a pattern, a piece of art.
  4. Press pictures – Technically ‘good’ pictures that are often used in professional media. They often communicate something beautiful, impressive or confusing. They offer multiple interpretations in the sense that they are evocative and stimulate narrative imagination.

The first two sets, the Flats and the POVs, are probably most appealing to your youth participants. These are the pictures they often use in communication (Instagram/Facebook) or the images that are similar to those found in computer games. However, these sets also have their limits. They are sometimes less applicable in exercises to trigger memories and find common ground. That is why these sets can mainly be used in the first steps of the workshop (team building – triggering creativity – triggering awareness).

The Postcards and Press pictures sets serve far better in the last phases of the workshop and, when used correctly, are very much applicable in triggering memories and emotions.

First of all, we invite you to take a look at the sets and to determine which you like most or you consider best suited for your workshop’s aim. However, if you don’t consider yourself a great improviser and you are looking for more security, we advise you to start with some exercises connected to the first two picture sets and to finish the workshop with one or two exercises connected to the last two sets.