Well what can I say? This year has been such an awesome year. As it is winding down to the end, I am taking time to reflect on the many shoots I have been on, and the MANY awesome people I have had the pleasure to meet, and work with. I am truly blessed to do what I love, and have a passion for. It just so happens that I get to meet a lot of people! How cool is that?!
I am very pleased and excited to be apart of the Help Portrait organization. My fellow photographer friend, Barbara Yasuhara is a Lifestyle & Wedding photographer based in San Francisco (whoop whoop!) AND is the leader of the Help Portrait for the Berkeley Division!
I have had such a great year, I want to give back to the community. So, what is Help Portrait? Here is an interview I did with Barbara.
Q. What is Help Portrait?
A. Help Portrait is a non-profit organization founded by Celebrity Photographer, Jeremy Cowart. It is a Global movement of photographers using their talent, and their gear to give back to their communities.
We are not taking pictures, we are GIVING pictures, and because this is done during the holiday season, we have the opportunity to give a family something that they may not have been able to afford or have access to, a family portrait. The photos are not for the photographer’s portfolios or for sale, as a matter of fact, money is not involved, again, it is a GIFT.
OUR PROGRESS TO-DATE
201,367 portraits given
Q. How did you get involved in Help Portrait- Berkeley Division?
A. I will never forget when I got a call from Joey Chandler who is the Project Leader for the San Francisco area Help Portrait. He had implemented an Oakland Division, and I was on board for that location. He then received an inquiry from a Berkeley-based agency, The Berkeley Food & Housing Project, and Joey simply asked if I wanted to lead that location. How could I resist? I didn’t and last year was my first year as Site Manager for the agency. And now, a year later, I am eager and thrilled to be involved, to meet so many wonderful participants as well as meeting the many photographers and volunteers that all come together for a common purpose, community.
Q. What have you gained from leading help portrait?
A. There is nothing better than to receive a “hug” from a complete stranger who said to me “I like you!” I can’t explain it but it’s much better than a paycheck, the moment stays with you forever when you know that you made a difference in the life of just one if not many. And trust me, the many smiles, tears, and thank you’s shared at the event is to say the least, better than “Queen for a Day!”
Q. What does it take to get a help portrait event going?
A. Knowing your community, addressing the need, and serving the purpose. In this case The Berkeley Food & Housing Project has an ongoing mission to ease and end the crisis of homelessness providing emergency food and shelter, transitional housing, permanent housing and placement of support services to individuals and families. They have been around since 1970 serving many programs that serve men, women, children, and a broad spectrum of specialized needs.
Q. How can everyday people help?
A. The event takes place Saturday December 8, 2012 9am-6pm, and if one is available, with a willingness to serve, that is how they can help! You can call me at 510.965.1564, or you can sign yourself up where you see a “need” , or where you feel you would be an asset.
Another way to help us besides volunteering your time is making a donation at http://hpberkeley.com we need funds for the ink and printer paper for the portraits and if we have anything left over we would like to purchase 5×7 photo frames of photo folios for the participants to place their portraits in. Again it’s a gift and we’d like them to enjoy the complete experience.
This is the link to our Sign Up Sheet, we would LOVE to have you!
I’d like to take this time and thank Dario Leventini of F3 Studios whose not only helping to promote this cause, but is also a volunteer himself for this years project, he makes me proud of our community of photographers. See you on December 8th!
find Barbara on the web. w| www.ystudiophotography.com
I am also very excited to be apart of Help Portrait Berkeley!
Thank you for reading, we hope to see you there!