Photography Challenge – A theme and first subject!


I set myself a new challenge as part of my ROW80 goals for this round, the challenge was:

Photography – Approach 1 stranger, photograph them and blog about it – another challenge, to get me out of the house and meeting people – should be interesting! hopefully one a week, but not sure yet – still a new idea!

Lots of people were intrigued and scared by this challenge. And there were a lot of questions around what would be the theme for the challenge. After reading all the comments, which included some theme suggestions it was actually reading the blog of a new follower of my blog that finally gave me the idea for my theme. The blog (and new follower) was a local project Your Ideas Redditch which is a community project that  hosts a variety of activities and groups for local people within a district of Redditch. Why not pop over and check out their blog and their website. The idea it gave me for a theme for my photography challenge was:

Community

Community means a lot of different things to different people. For me, in the context of this challenge, it is about the people, places and activities that make up the community in which I live, but mainly it will be ‘people’ as they will form the subjects of my photographs 🙂

So, I set out with my new theme in my head to take a series of pictures for a blog post about my local town centre (coming soon) and a hope that I could approach a ‘stranger’ who is also a feature of our community whilst I was out to gain my first subject for the photography challenge as well.

It turned out to be easier than I expected. As I was snapping away and taking notes in the Town Centre I was just noting down how charitable fundraisers are a staple feature of the Town Centre. Every day there are different groups out in force spreading the news about their cause and looking for donations. This day was no exception and when one of the fundraisers approached me I immediately thought ‘Yes! my first subject!’

Photography Challenge – Subject 1

Welcome to the first post in my photography challenge series, where the theme is ‘community’ and the task ‘to photograph one stranger and blog about it’.

Allow me to introduce you to Dave (pictured above).

I met Dave in Redditch Town Centre where he was busy fundraising for Every Child on a very cold January afternoon. He approached me wondering what I was doing with my camera and notebook and (of course) with the desire to spread the news about his cause! I explained what I was doing and asked if he would mind being featured on my blog, he agreed to being photographed and blogged about! (yay!) So we had a chat about what he was doing in Redditch today…

Having previously worked in a demanding role earning over £30K Dave wanted to move to a role where he could ‘make a difference’ so he left his job and went to work for the NSPCC. Now a lead Fundraiser for Every Child Dave spends a lot of time out in the community raising awareness and funds for the cause.

Every Child is a charity that specialises in work with Child Exploitation, such as Child Prostitution, Trafficking and Slavery worldwide. Workers go out and find the child victims of these horrific exploitations. Once found they remove the children to safety, re-home them in loving, supportive families and provide ongoing support, social work and counselling.

Dave told me how one of the youngest child prostitutes they had found was a 4 year old girl who had been prostituting for 7 months when they discovered her. And how when they find these children they work with local governments, authorities and charities to ensure the children are not just returned to their biological families, who often had sold the children into these regimes  in the first place and would be likely to just re-sell the child again. Apparently you can buy a child for as little as half the cost of my camera, he said (that would be around £200).

Dave explained how he has just quit smoking in the New Year and that for the cost of one packet of cigarettes per month you can make a huge difference to their cause by donating that money to them instead.  I’m not one to sign up for ANYTHING whilst in the street like that (although agreeing to a direct debit is exactly what street fundraiser like Dave want you to do) and when I assured him I would check out their website when I got home he was a little dubious – understandably, a lot of people will say this just to get away! The difference being, I explained, that as he had agreed to be my subject for my challenge I would need to go to the website to include a link to it in my post – so for once, this was a person who actually meant what they said and also the charity would get some extra publicity through my blog! 🙂 And I did check out the website and donate (not a regular Direct debit unfortunately as I cannot afford that at this time, but still any donation is better than none!) to this very worthy cause.

So, there you have it my first subject in the challenge and a charitable cause you may wish to check out and donate to yourself:

www.everychild.org.uk

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17 comments on “Photography Challenge – A theme and first subject!

    • I am still nervous about it, but this good start has inspired me to stick at it! I’ve had a few ideas of ‘community’ strangers I could ‘meet’ to include in the project 😀

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  2. What a fantastic idea! 🙂 I also would never be so brave as to ask a stranger if I could photograph them. What a great guy Dave must be, too. Quitting a well-paying job to help children takes guts!

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