Date and Time:

Forthcoming 2018


The Fig Writer’s Studio

Storytelling, Using Still Image and Written Word with Spike Johnson


The diversification of narrative medium is valuable. Text adjacent to still image offers the audience an intimate perspective, and alternative languages with which to view a subject.

Immersive storytelling allows us the access, time, and trust to explore a theme.

It offers us a rabbit hole to climb down, a doorway with which to connect empathy, and ideas to translate through reporting.

This workshop will teach attendees to combine two disciplines – words and images, and the workflows to record both concurrently. It will explain methods of story selection, gaining access, written/ visual narrative building, safety, trust, and the immersive techniques necessary to allow enough time to produce material.

Workshop sessions will be divided between lectures, group discussion, and critiques. An out of workshop practice project will be assigned to each attendee.

No specialist equipment will be required, however each attendee should have an image-making device, preferably digital (an iPhone is possible), and a laptop computer.

This course requires a minimum number of students to enroll.

About Spike

Spike creates stories using written word, still photography, and moving image. He is an immersive journalist, embedding with subjects for significant durations to make long form, non-fiction narratives that document conflict, and explore life at the edges of human experience.

During the last ten years he has focused on hard to reach areas of Myanmar, Central America, Eastern Europe, the United States, and England.

In 2016 Spike was funded by the Society of Environmental Journalists, and Mongabay to continue work in Southern Texas and Western Guatemala. In 2014 he received support from the Pulitzer Center for Crisis Reporting to create a story about the decommission of child soldiers in Myanmar.

His work exhibits internationally, and publishes with outlets including The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Smithsonian Magazine, Vice Magazine, Foreign Policy, The Telegraph, Human Rights Watch, Marie Claire, and has won awards from National Press Photographers Association, The International Photography Awards, The Society of Environmental Journalists, and the Associated Press.

In the summer of 2017 his first book Saya Sayama: Three years in Myanmar will launch with Vancouver publisher Misfit Press.




Saya Sayama: Three years in Myanmar

Selected Publications:
The Olympic Games You’ve Never Heard Of

Untold stories of the Trans-Pecos Pipeline

Myanmar: When Child Soldiers Retire

Saving Burma’s Child Soldiers


Additional Information

Date & Time:

Forthcoming 2018


The Fig Writer’s Studio


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