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Help-Portrait is a global movement of photographers, hairstylists and makeup artists who find people in need, take their portrait, and then provide a professional print...all for free. This gives people who otherwise couldn’t afford photography a chance to capture a moment, a memory…and a whole lot more. As of 2019, over 380,000 portraits have been given by more than 75,000 volunteers spread across 67 countries.

I stumbled upon Help-Portrait in their inaugural year when a studio space that I rented in Kansas City hosted a local event. After moving to Colorado in 2011, I immediately founded a local chapter in Steamboat Springs that provided hundreds of people with a free portrait, including onsite printing and framing. Shortly after moving to Prescott, Arizona, I founded another local chapter to repeat that same process.

For 10 years, I helped organize local Help-Portrait events while also paying for their expenses through my charitable giving program. But, I never got to photograph our guests. That all changed in 2020 when I decided to take on the task of photographing all 40 sessions myself, in an outdoor setting, to comply with COVID social distancing recommendations.

Regardless of what role I have played each year, Help-Portrait has always been just as rewarding for me as it was for our guests, thus proving the words of St. Francis that "it is in giving that we receive."