Would this violate the Help-Portrait mission in any way?
I like the idea of taking photos and asking subjects to volunteer information for an online profile - then posting both to a site to be shared with friends, family and the community - asking for individual-specific donations of $25 that could be delivered with the printed portraits.
For example - Person A says she is a single mom and could use two twin-sized blankets for her kids, while Person B is an elderly gentleman who doesn't really need a blanket but could really use a six-months supply of toothbrushes and toothpaste. We'd come up with a standard donation for people who aren't comfortable sharing information.
I think the portraits, combined with the stories, would be a powerful motivator for donors. This is a VERY small town, so this sort of scope would probably be much easier than in a large community.
Mmmmm, I understand the good intentions. But this is a real hot potatoe! Try to achieve the charity/help/gifting without having to post a pic: its safer and probably more respectful of the circumstances of the portrait subjects.
Great idea, but for the sake of protecting peoples privacy, it's a no for us.
On the big-picture front, we had hundreds, if not thousands, of people not show up yesterday because they thought that it was either too good to be true, OR that their images would be displayed and worse-yet sold. Privacy is UTMOST concern for us at Help-Portrait. Not displaying these pictures publicly is how we are building our reputation. Hopefully someday, distrust won't be an issue any more.
Thanks for asking the questions, thinking outside the box and asking for feedback.
that was one of the saddest things I learned while organizing this event. People are not trusting. Everyone I told about the free portraits thought that it was too good to be true and that it was just some free portrait promotion from some photo studio down the street.
I feel like for us, after this year, we will have gained the trust of the people. Press coverage is where it's at. The more press coverage we can get the more likely we are to spread the word that this is a REAL thing
I got a similar response... When we were winding up our event, one volunteer (non H-P) said that we were talking advantage of the kids... and that we have come there to have a picnic! It was very painful to hear that.
and as BSC-Photo has mentioned above, press coverage is the only thing that can clear this misconception!
OMG that really is sad.. I hate to say it but the reason seems to be because until Help-Portrait came around, photographers really werent doing much to give back (as a collective - not as an individual) which is why Help-Portrait is so important to the community. The more we do this and the more people we touch the better it will get. If you do 100 families, those 100 families will each tell at least 5 other families about their experience.. Then next year 500 people will know about the cause and it will spread.
We had an experience where the local women's shelter just did NOT want to participate because they could not grasp it. In hind sight, instead of calling to invite people next year I will actually go down and talk to the administrator and bring my iphone and show them our video. Its just one of those things where if you make calls and send emails people just automatically feel that it's telemarketing of some sort.
I really can't wait until next year - we got some good press coverage and every year after is just going to get better and better
I didn't sense this distrust, but perhaps because we are in a small city & because of the way we recruited participants. We found what worked really well for us was to go through the local non-profit organizations (Salvation Army, for example) who were willing to fill out application forms (all were accepted of course) with their clientel. They selected people that they thought needed & would appreciate this sort of thing. On the application form we put a statement explaining that there was no catch & why we were doing this. This can be time consuming, but the affiliated non-profits were more than willing to do it. I think because this was coming from people they already trusted, they jumped on board. Of the 17 families that signed up, only 3 did not show up & 1 of them called to let us know...I feel that was a pretty good success rate.
Jessie - we reached out to the non-profits but even they were hazy on the "catch" being non-existent. It sucks that people in needy situations are so taken advantage of that they don't trust something that's truly for them
I wonder is "where" the portraits are being taken make a difference. We were set up in the local library branch in a disadvantaged area. We had a couple of people express surprise when we said no catch, but no one was distrustful. I think a lot of people trusted the library not to steer them wrong, because it's a public place where they already feel comfortable.
We were in a large open warehouse.. it wasn't in an existing photo studio (I can see how that would create distrust) but I also think it might have to do with where we are from. Connecticut is a different breed of people - LOTS of "rich" business people who do chairity fundraisers, but the charity around here always is galas and dinners and stuff and while those things raise a lot of money, there's not a lot to "give back" directly.
We didn't necessarily want to use a church only because we didn't want to be associated with one church or religion and not alienate people. We didn't want it to be in an existing photo studio because we didn't want people to think it was a promotional thing, and we couldn't really find anywhere else that was big enough of short notice (I only had 18 days to plan)