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Photography workshop helping people to grieve with loss of a loved one

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A photography workshop is hoping to help people go through the grieving process after losing a loved one.

The workshop is part of a three-week series teaching people the basics of photography and how to use it to express their emotions.

More than 20 people spent Thursday night at the Faith Presbyterian Church. Many of them have never met before up until about three weeks ago.

“I thought that it was really nice to kind of connect with other teens like me,” said 16-year-old Cierra McCaleb. “You know who kind of understand, hey, you’re not the only one going through this.”

McCaleb has been going to the workshop with her sister, Iyanna. They would sit in groups, talk about how they feel and what they think when they look at some of the pictures.

“They have different meanings to me, one of my pictures are in the rain,” said 14-year-old Iyanna Fluker.

Fluker said the process has not been easy. She said she’s still in the process of grieving after losing her stepfather almost three years ago.

“He was struck by a car as he was walking down the street,” said Fluker.

Kelly Petersohn said the grief process is an ongoing one.

“It’s an ongoing process that requires a lot of different opportunities to be able to express what they’ve been through and being able to tell their story and being able to share the emotions they’ve experienced,” said Petersohn.

Petersohn is a youth grief specialist with Community Healing Hearts.

While everyone handles grief differently, she’s hoping through pictures it can help ease the pain.

“We’re looking at using photography because it’s just so relevant right now. I mean photography is at their fingertips. Everywhere we go we got iPhone, tablets, pictures and cameras everywhere,” said Petersohn. “So it’s just a really easy way to be able to access and explore.”

The series is hosted by Community Healing Hearts and InTouch Bereavement.

Another workshop is scheduled for April 30. That workshop will focus on using painting.