A slide from a PowerPoint presentation which forms a page in the photographic report for the event.
In VIPP events, participants are asked not to take notes because they will have a record of the workshop in the photographic report which can be provided at the end of the event. Writing in notebooks also restricts the mobility of the participants,
possibly requiring tables. With modern camera and computer technologies it has become quicker and easier to make good reports about VIPP processes. Normally participants in an event want the documentation and outcome of their learning or planning event as soon as possible. Organisations also want a report for monitoring and follow up, and donors want accounting for use of their funds. A photographic report and a computer presentation can be produced using digital photographs and a presentation software such as OpenOffice Impress or PowerPoint.
For further use, reports can be posted on websites or given to non-participants. However, be aware: a photographic report is often only useful for the participants who have taken part in an event and want to refer to the report to get specific information or to repeat specific exercises. They may also want to refer to such a report to reflect on the discussions that took place in the event or to reflect upon their own learning process within it. If you want a report to show the results of the workshop to non-participants, you will need to synthesize the photographic report into a shorter format. This can be a more time-consuming task.
You need access to a good digital camera with at least 5 mega-pixel resolution, enough memory and spare batteries for preparing the photographic report. You also have to make sure that the charts and cards are visualised according to the basic rules of writing. The ideas are lost if nobody except the writer can read them. Taking good pictures requires good lighting. Low or uneven lighting makes poor photographs and the use of a flash may result in reflections causing large washed out spots in the photographs.
Use photographs which illustrate the processes and summarise the content. Go for shots of situations during the event that stand out as highlights for the participants. Make use of photographs of charts that represent the collective memory of discussions and interactions during the workshop. Provide a title for each slide and add text where needed, but do not overload slides with too much text. You may also animate the presentation to make it attractive, but do not overdo this as unnecessary or excessive animation can distract rather than focus the attention of the audience.
The advantage of Impress or PowerPoint presentations is that you can share an electronic copy with participants before they leave the venue. You can also show the presentation to the group on the last day as a review of the whole process they have experienced. Such a presentation can help trigger reflection by the participants before the final workshop evaluation. Slides making up the presentation may also be printed on paper and then photocopied for distribution to the participants, client or sponsor, as a report. Or you can convert the presentation into small JPEG or PDF files for dissemination as attachments to emails. However, photo reports are normally only for those who attended the event since they may not be meaningful to others.