Coronavirus surprised most of the population and especially lockdown meaning everything got cancelled. Weddings, family shoot and commercial work, everything just stopped suddenly one day. It sent a lot of people reeling and tipped everyone's world upside down. Suddenly we had to amend and to adjust. We can't see friends or family in person just on-screen. We can't go food shopping like we used too. Nothing is the same.
I wanted to do something to bring a bit of joy in all this madness, bring a smile to peoples faces and have a positive memory to look back on. I'd seen lockdown portraits in my photography community, they started in America I believe with people taking photos through windows from their cars. I sat and thought about it and a friend messaged me and said I needed to do it and it felt like the perfect way to bring joy whilst using my gifts so I put a message out on Facebook asking people to message me to book a place and then donate to NHS charities together.
I genuinely expected about 10 people to sign up, maybe some clients who live in Penwortham and some people I have not met before. I would take some fun photos and we would raise a little bit of money for the NHS. Well, it all went a little crazy, everyone loved the idea.
I created a route on good ole google maps and on the Saturday and Sunday we set off, 2 adults, a toddler, a baby, 2 prams and a camera to walk around Penwortham. It was so lovely to see everyone was excited to be having their photo taken, some had dressed up, some did silly poses and most genuinely were just happy to see another person in the flesh. I must admit, I was happy to see others too. I stood at the end of peoples drives and captured moments in lockdown as they posed and laughed for those couple of minutes we had together.
The story doesn't stop there I got a message from the LEP to ask if they could feature a few of the photos and the amount of money we had raised online so they could record the people of this city in lockdown. I said yes and suddenly found myself posing with a camera recreating one of the photos I took with an amazing family who happily dressed up in their wedding outfits again. It was surreal but a bit of good fun.
I woke up about 2 weeks later to a message saying I was on the front cover of the LEP. I quickly woke up to check it said what I thought it said, threw on some clothes and walked to the paper shop at the end of our road feeling quite anxious and shocked. There I was smiling on the front of the paper so after having a complete mental breakdown I bought a copy and headed home to show my hubby and kids, who frankly didn't care one was busy playing with dinosaurs and the other was having a nap haha.
I will openly admit I hate having my photo taken and anything that includes me being front and centre but this wasn't about me, it was about the joy these photos brought and the £350 we raised for the NHS.
Although it was weird, and still is, seeing photos of myself I saved my copy an I will show it my Grandma when we can go see her again. I think she'll like that and to be honest, if that's all that comes of this on a personal level I'll be happy, I mean if the dementia will let her remember who I am when we go that is.
Here are most of the photos I took that weekend, stay safe everyone.