Thursday, February 2, 2012

help-portrait 2011 at bliss studio-a picture IS worth

for those of you who know me, you know that i am a social worker. this profession is near and dear to my heart - i knew my calling probably before i even started school - elementary school that is! ...i mean i remember empathizing with kermit the frog when he sang "it ain't easy being green." who does that!?  all i know is social work is truly an extension of who i am as a person - i love what i do, but there are times when my heart grows heavy & i wonder if what i do [ because i am only ONE person ] matters.

on 12.10.11 i was does matter.

one person here and one person there, etcetera, etcetera...adds up.

the 2011 help-portrait stats were released in january...

  • 56 countries
  • 67,927 portraits given
  • 4,984 photographers
  • 8,793 volunteers

as a social worker, i am familiar with several helping organizations who meet needs such as food, clothing, shoes...but help-portrait provides a photo that represents value.  it is more than a keepsake or a representation of a person's likeness - it becomes a receipt of an exchange between individuals & the currency is dignity, courage, love, and hope.  

when people come together to work toward the common good, something magical & tangible is produced.  it may look like a picture, but it's often worth more than a 1,000 words...

artists have created self-portraits since the beginning of time...a self-portrait, in artistic circles, could prove your worth.  the wealthiest members of society have always commissioned portraits of themselves & their family as a way to prove their social setting. 

while the technological development of the camera, film, and then digital brought photography to the masses, professional portraiture still remains a luxury most of the world cannot afford.  

help-portrait is a global event each december when photographers, stylists, and other volunteers team together to GIVE instead of take, photos...
(borrowed & adapted from help-portrait)

surprising to me, two local non-profit organizations turned down this opportunity.  as i result, i extended the invitation to teen parents - "current" teen parents in high school and "former" teen parents who are working, continuing their education, or both.  i too, was a teen parent and thank goodness for our family friend who was a photographer & took pictures of my little ones as they grew. otherwise,  i would not have had the money to spend on professional photos...

it was a pleasure to "pay it forward" - and share this experience with my own kids.  deztanie and her friend did an awesome job helping me set up, organize and keep my "cool." jaylen did an amazing job capturing moments through his lens of choice...the video camera and producing a great video!  i am bummed i cannot get it to upload to here!

overall, the turnout at bliss studio was small in comparison to other help-portrait events, but it was HUGE in terms of joy & positivity - there were so many smiles all around & not just for the camera...

team bliss - missing a volunteer, kaelyn who had to leave before our group pic!

cannot wait to do this again next year!
peace & bliss, 

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