Two friends walked in with their processions – a couple of backpacks, a canvas tote, and
a rollaway suitcase. New friends – they apparently met on street after the woman (maybe in her 40’s or 50’s) had lost her house in the last 10 months. I know that because she had brought her dog – Snoop Dog Tyler, and said she had gotten the dog before she was homeless – it would have been irresponsible to have a dog without a home. But now, she wasn’t being irresponsible. She was his home. Dogs don’t know that homes have roofs and refrigerators and TV’s. They just know they have people who care about them.
Her friend was younger and wanted to have a photo taken with her dog. She had no interest in a photo, but then we told her we could do a little makeover – hair and make up and very softly she said, ‘that would be nice.’ It was nice. She looked nice. She looked happy. She looked more confident. Her friend told her she looked amazing. She blushed.
They had some water – and we fashioned a bowl out of a styrofoam cup for the dog so he could have some water too. Someone had some donated items in their car to give them– a blanket, some toiletries. We embraced them. More importantly, they embraced us. Prior to coming to Help Portrait, they had been to a bookstore. The young man was interested in books by specific authors. The owner had pointed them to the dollar table…and the door.
The young man asked if we wanted a donation for the photos. No. They had already given us something priceless.
Most telling was their conversation after they received their photos. They wanted to have a photo of each other for when they returned to live as they had known it a few short months ago. They wanted to remember each other.
HELP Portriat…because a photo is worth….
Photo Credit: Ken Sklute & Sarah Hales
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Such a beautiful post, Sandy! You really captured what Help Portrait is all about . Love that pair of friends’ story … when I was watching the guy have his picture taken with the dog, and how excited he was about it, I got goosebumps … and I got ’em again reading your post. : )
p.s. I’m glad you were able to use the collage! 🙂 But now I wish I’d edited the images before I made it … ha ha)