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Boston MA Children’s Photographer – an incredible afternoon at the Cradles to Crayons’ 2016 Un-Gala

What a wonderful afternoon I got to have yesterday! There was giving, there was helping, there were volunteering children… there were smiles and there was so much joy. In past years I’ve loved donating my time on international Help-Portrait Day (more info is here), but I couldn’t find a local event in Boston, so when this opportunity presented itself, I was thrilled to be able to donate my time for such an extraordinary event.

I spent the afternoon as one of the volunteer photographers at the Cradles to Crayons 2016 Un-Gala, where over 400 people came, volunteered their time, and made a difference. (And I think the number might have been as much as twice that, since there was a whole 2nd shift of people who came in the morning!)

I’m going to let the photos speak for themselves. My job was to shadow the incredible founder of Cradles to Crayons, Lynn Margherio, and I was honored to spend the day watching her do her thing with her fantastic assistant Patrick by her side.

I have almost 100 photos from the day, though! If anyone would like to look through them or download them, you’re more than welcome to do so — you can find them on my client galleries page.

Enjoy!

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Thanks for letting me be part of an incredible day. What a great event!

Help-Portrait Boston, Year 3

For the third year in a row, yesterday I participated in an inspirational day.  The brainchild of celebrity photographer Jeremy Cowart, Help-Portrait is “a community of photographers, coming together across the world, to use their photography skills to give back to their local community. On or around December 10th, photographers around the world will be grabbing their cameras, finding people in need, and taking their picture. When the prints are ready, the photographs get delivered. Yep. It really is that easy.”

I volunteered with our local group (find yours by clicking around on the community site here) and met some wonderful people, both in front of and behind cameras.  The Hyde Square Task Force hosted the event at their facility, and we (25+ photographers and volunteers) provided over 100 families who live or have roots within a mile of Jackson Square with portraits over the course of the day.

Attendees were welcomed…

Primped, by volunteers from Empire Beauty Schools:

And then they got to show off their pearly whites… here are just a few of the fantastic people I met:

Then they came downstairs to the spot where another group of fabulous volunteers were printing them an 8×10 and two 4×6’s, as well as burning them a CD of all their pictures to take home.  It was so well organized!  So many team members made it happen, but the most visible on our end were Howard and Jessica – thank you guys for doing TONS of legwork before the event (and I’m sure, late into the night!).  All our team members, send me your websites and I’ll link to you! :)

And our wall of love got bigger and bigger throughout the day.  This picture shows only about half of the families we saw.  Go team! Wonderful to work with you all, so fun to get to see all these smiles.

P.S. This was the first year we got releases from the subjects to show their beautiful faces on our websites – to help get the word out about this event so it can spread to more than the fifty countries it already spread to.  Of course, if any of my gorgeous subjects would prefer I not post their picture here – send me an email and of course I’ll take it down.

P.P.S. For historical perspective, I do have a blog post from the first event I took part in here (I slacked and didn’t do one last year, sorry).

brandy - December 11, 2011 - 10:51 am

SO psyched that you got to show the portraits! I remember your post from a few years ago, and back then I thought — this is so powerful, I wish I could see the results!

Article on The Small Story

What a lovely, lovely article by Cara Solomon at TheSmallStory.com about our Help Portrait event last Saturday.

Click here to read.

FUN & FACT - December 19, 2009 - 3:59 am

You always come up with great stuff I just love your site you are very talented I’ll recommend your site to my friends and family members great job very appreciated..keep it up..

Help-Portrait Boston

What an incredible day! Fourteen other photographers and I came together today to take some pictures just to make people feel good. And look at that. It made us feel good too.

The brainchild of celebrity photographer Jeremy Cowart, Help-Portrait is “a community of photographers, coming together across the world, to use their photography skills to give back to their local community. On or around December 12th, photographers around the world will be grabbing their cameras, finding people in need, and taking their picture. When the prints are ready, the photographs get delivered. Yep. It really is that easy.”

This Boston crew had an amazing shoot today at Germaine Lawrence, a residential treatment center for adolescent girls. We shot over 50 girls, aged 11-18, and though I don’t want to put any of the girls’ photos up here, here are a few I snapped of the crazy photographers and the setup there.

We set up four “stations” in the gym:

And the best part was the group of volunteer hair and makeup people (thanks to Empire School of Beauty in Warwick, RI) who came and did hair and makeup on all 50 girls! The aroma of hairspray wafted waaaaay down the hall :) But the girls really felt like rock stars. You could see it when they came for their photos – their eyes were twinkling.

Lisa grabbing some crazy shots of two of our fabulous volunteers (as we waited for hair and makeup on the girls… this stuff takes time, after all!):

See what I mean? You go there, hoping to make other people happy, and you just get happy yourself.

Meg getting a kick out of her subject:

A couple of the sweet photographers gave the girls a chance behind the lens, too – this girl has a future in fashion photography ahead of her…

Another switcheroo – photographer as subject:

It was not only an incredible day because the girls were so awesome, but it was also great to get to spend some time with like-minded photog peeps. This team of people has been meeting and planning this event for months now, and I can’t thank them enough for letting me join them after I wasn’t able to attend ANY of the planning meetings.

Great day, gorgeous photos – I’m so excited for the girls to get their prints (kindly donated by iPrintfromhome.com). I think they’re really going to love them.

Nate - December 12, 2009 - 10:51 pm

Great narrative. Glad to meet you and look forward to seeing more of your work!

Julia Snider - December 12, 2009 - 10:59 pm

Hey Jess, what a fun time. You are on the ball getting this together so fast! I'm Julia, the volunteer in the photo with Tom.

Rich - December 12, 2009 - 11:13 pm

What a day!
Great stuff Jess.
I too tired to post tonight but I'll have some suff in the morning.

–Rich

Lone Wolf - December 12, 2009 - 11:42 pm

Jess

Great blog. You nailed it as well as your shots behind the camera.

You guys made their day with your skill and I was glad to be a part of it

–John

Brian Matiash - December 13, 2009 - 8:50 am

Jess,

I am proud to have had the opportunity to see you in action. You did such a great job shooting the girls and assisting the other photographers by emoting with some of the more introverted models.

I look forward to shooting with you again for Help Portrait next year.

Also, like Nate said – wonderful narrative. The shots are perfect.

Best,

Brian