Describing Fireworks 2016

Our first public workshop

We had a great turnout for our first public Describing Fireworks Workshop! Big thanks to Langara College for kindly donating the space.

Our first, free 3-hour public workshop, led by Collin van Uchelen and Steph Kirkland, featured an introduction to pyrotechnical terms with videos to illustrate common and unusual effects.

Anyone with vision loss interested in trying out the technique could attend the workshop in one of two ways:

1) with a sighted companion who wanted to learn and practice the technique with them, or

2) on their own and partnered with one of our sighted volunteers

Sighted participants learned and practiced the basic technique, honing their skills with feedback from their partners.

“This is the first time in my life I’ve ever wished for a bigger back,” said the petite Laura. “It’s like a fireworks massage.”

We all got to experience the effects as we switched partners. It was helpful for sighted folks to feel the drawings on their backs as well. We all shared and compared drawing styles and techniques that best illustrated different firework effects and then practiced filling in other details verbally, like colour.

These newly trained and returning fireworks describers will use VocalEye’s unique tactile technique with verbal cues to describe Team Australia at the Celebration of Light in English Bay on Wednesday, July 27, 2016.

Collin was invited to observe the setup on the fireworks barge. Read more about the Barge Tour

Check out last year’s (2015) description here.

Collin’s introduction and highlights from the workshop, filmed and edited by Rick Lin:

Photos by Rick Lin: