Today it’s the official Help Portrait day.
So we wish all the participating photographers and volunteers a great day and loads of people that visit your location.
What is help portrait?
Help portrait is the idea of US photographer and our friend Jeremy Cowart.
Once a year there is one day where all people that are not able to afford to have their portrait taken get this opportunity, being photographed by a professional photographer and getting a beautiful portrait of them or their families.
Over the years this have grown to a worldwide organization and many volunteers that are working that day to give people that what is so important, a portrait, and sometimes even more, a listening ear, food, drinks…. hope.
Being part of this organization is not a task, it’s a passion, a mission.
People don’t realize how important a portrait can be, for some it’s the only remembrance they have of a loved one after they passed, for others its something they will get in the mail from someone who is far away due to war or other reasons but would rather be with his/her family.
Our studio is helping out people in the Netherlands who want to organize this day themselves and give them tips, help them with the proper channels, but we also channel media through to the correct people, this is necessary if you want to make the organization work on a national level and make sure that you get the attention and the people towards the volunteers.
The first few years we organized our own Help Portrait in a local school building where we worked with several photographers in different rooms, last year we choose to visit a local refugee organization and photograph the people locally inside their complex, the stories we heard and the people we saw really made us leave with a mixed feeling, on the one side totally drained of energy due to the horrific stories on the other side so incredibly pumped up with energy due to the reactions we got from the people, but most of all it stuck with me how some children reacted to the strobes…. for some we ended up using constant lighting.
This year will be the first time we are inviting people over to our studio, we will be working with 3 photographers and two different sets in cooperation with the local food bank who brought us into contact with families that really needed this. And we heard that we will also be getting some very special guests in the form of Sinterklaas and his helpers (the Dutch Santa Claus).