By ERIN HORROCKS-POPE
In the world of art and photography, the upcoming 36 Xposures event in the Beach stands out as a unique fusion of creativity, competition, and an exciting venture into the world of documentary series production.
This innovative project, spearheaded by local professional photographer Michelle Quance, is set to be celebrated on Friday, Oct. 20, at the Balmy Beach Club.
At its core, 36 Xposures is a photography competition that challenges artists to rediscover the roots of their craft. The name is a nod to traditional 36-exposure film rolls, something used less frequently in today’s world of unlimited digital photography.
Photographers must capture a model in a single location within 30 minutes and only 36 shots. What sets this competition apart is the absence of immediate feedback; photographers can’t review their work on a digital screen. As a result, anticipation and suspense build as participants eagerly await the results, with the final image selection unveiled weeks later.
Quance emphasized the competition’s unique nature. “I feel like Toronto needs more interactive art experiences like this. Something’s been missing on Toronto’s art scene, and this is it,” she said.
But, 36 Xposures is not merely a contest. It transforms into an interactive art show celebrating the photographers’ journey in this creative effort. The event’s culmination includes the Oct. 20 gallery exhibit at the Balmy Beach Club showcasing the results of the competition. Here, the judges will select their top choice for the winner. Still, the event doesn’t stop at this; it also allows attendees to participate by casting their votes for the People’s Choice Award.
36 Xposures is not confined to a one-time event, though.
It’s the beginning of something bigger, a venture into documentary series production. Quance envisions the project evolving into a docu-series that could find a home on streaming platforms or TV networks. Her vision is that each season will feature a different group of diverse photographers, exploring themes such as sports photography, photography students, wildlife photographers, and more.
“This [creating 36 Xposures] has been on my mind for years, and now that it’s happening, I’m never going back,” said Quance, emphasizing her long-standing dream of making 36 Xposures a reality.
In addition to the creative aspects, 36 Xposures also serves as a meaningful fundraiser for Rett Syndrome research. Rett Syndrome is a neurological and developmental disorder that severely impacts affected individuals’ lives, including their ability to speak, walk, eat, and breathe.
With a personal connection to this cause through her daughter Tennyson, who has Rett Syndrome, Quance’s goal is to use the platform of 36 Xposures to raise awareness and funds.
Tennyson’s story drives home the importance of Rett Syndrome research. Quance describes her daughter as “a sassy, smart, funny young woman who loves music and socializing” and a source of inspiration. Progress in gene-modifying therapies offers hope for a cure, and events such as 36 Xposures are key in advancing this research.
Originally from Clarkson in Mississauga, but residing in the Beach with her family since 1994, Quance feels deeply connected to the community. She appreciates the support and engagement of the local community in the 36 Xposures charitable initiative.
The overwhelming community support is evident from the event’s quick sell-out of all 200 tickets for the Oct. 20 event. The interactive art show also includes a raffle with enticing prizes such as a luxury cottage weekend getaway, catering for up to 10 guests, a professional photoshoot, and more. Proceeds of the raffle will directly contribute to Rett Syndrome research. Non-attendees can purchase raffle tickets online and follow along via the 36 Xposures Instagram account @thirty6xposures.
Quance expressed her gratitude to the friends and collaborators who have played a vital role in bringing 36 Xposures to life. She said she is ever-thankful to her documentarian, Rachel Bower, and her film editor, Shawna Eberle, for their priceless contributions. She also is extremely thankful to Shea Warrington of Shea Sells Boutique for her ongoing support and sponsorship of 36 Xposures.
To donate directly to The Hope Fund for Rett Syndrome research through the Ontario Rett Syndrome Association at https://rett.ca/hope-fund/
Residents can also follow the Oct. 20 event and 36 Xposures journey on Instagram at https://instagram.com/thirty6xposures/