Physical distance no problem for photographer's new portrait project
A Victoria, B.C., photographer wanted to give back to her community through a series of portraits
Chelsea Smith is used to taking intimate portraits of her clients in her studio. But because of COVID-19, her studio is her car, and her subjects are across the street.
Smith, the owner of Vintage Chic Portrait in Victoria, B.C., was inspired to create her new photography project after seeing a similar one in the United States.
She is taking portraits of people at the front steps of their homes, often holding up messages to loved ones or signs of encouragement.
"I stay in my vehicle across the street so I'm not getting out. People aren't coming to me. They're staying on their front steps," Smith told host Kathryn Marlow on CBC's All Points West.
In the age of physical distancing — a directive to stay at least two metres away from other people to avoid getting ill or spreading the infection — Smith has had to shut down her photography studio.
This project, which she has done for free or by donation to the 1Up Victoria Single Parent Resource Centre, has been her way of giving back to the community.
"[It's] been a lot of fun, and seeing all the beautiful families coming out and holding up signs [is] very powerful and meaningful."
Many, she said, just want to commemorate this strange time.
"I've had some people ask to have it done because they've sold their house and they're moving and they want a picture in front of their house. Lots just want to remember yeah, this crazy time, and the extra at-home time with their family."
If you have a COVID-19-related story we should pursue that affects British Columbians, please email us at email@example.com.
With files from All Points West