The Bed Stuy Social 'Photo' Club

I live in Bedford Stuyvesant on the border of Crown Heights, Brooklyn, historically home to African American and Caribbean communities. The area has been under threat from gentrification and real estate development, but many of my neighbors were born and raised in this tight-knit, working- class community.

I created a popup photography studio at my front yard where I live. I offered free portraits for members of the community. Despite there being an abundance of colorful characters with incredible histories and stories to tell, these are often people who would never have the opportunity to be in the spotlight – I wanted to treat them like superstars. I prepared unique props, colorful backgrounds that people could picked, took my time to take the best pictures for each participant and edited pictures. I did everything more traditional Photography except using a Digital camera.

It has been very successful. The best part was that many people got invloved in my project, they were cheering other subjects, helping studio setup and styling for the subjects. Everyone who came to the studio had fun and loved photographs at the end. I hope to build confidence for all those who take part and creative community through this project.