Bored with Colombia’s bad image in the press, U.S. citizen Barry McClain decided to start a project to show the Colombia he knows; a country of “the most welcoming and genuinely warm and friendly people I have ever met.”
To do this, the Washington D.C. resident started a website and signed up to Kickstarter, a website where project proposals can receive funds.
“The aim of the project is to spread some positive information about Colombia. There has been much media coverage of the negative aspects and little of the positive. I intend to produce a series of images focusing on the more positive sides of the story in Colombia. This idea came to me after I read an article about a newspaper that had decided to publish only good news for a day. Though this was a bit extreme it did give me the idea for this project. We cannot and should not hide from the realities of the world but I think giving equal attention to both the bad and the good would not be a bad idea either,” McClain told Colombia Reports.
“As with most stories bad press sells better than good. We all seem to enjoy reading sensational stories maybe because that is what is most often presented to us by the media. The situation in Colombia has provided plenty of fodder for this type of consumption over the years. I think all countries have their own issues and we should all try to focus a little more on the good,” the American added.
To contribute to more positive reporting on Colombia, the American hopes for funds that allow him to travel through the country, “capturing images that will portray the positive side of the country and her people. I have found Colombians to be among the most welcoming and genuinely warm and friendly people I have ever met and would like to help share that fact.”
“I don’t fool myself into thinking that one person can completely change many years worth of bad press. However, the world is a very different place today and the efforts of one person whether they are a blogger, reporter or photographer can be beneficial. You have only to look at current events in the Middle East to see how fast things can change. I do think that even one man’s efforts can help to portray a different side of the story and if I can accomplish that in a fair manner then I will have done my best,” McClain concludes.