{mother's day}
Leave this field empty
Thursday 06 June
By erika
Pin It

I received the most amazing email from one of the organizers from a volunteer event at a Women's Domestic Violence shelter I attended on Mother's Day weekend:

Dear Erika,

Thank you so much for everything you did to make Saturday a success!  The famiiles (and the staff, and volunteers!) were blown away by the pictures you were able to capture.

I know that, at times, the day was hectic and emotions were high but I hope you know just how special these photos are - and will continue to be -for these women and their children.

You have given them a tangible and positive example of their journey towards a violent free life. What a gift!

Please pass along our thanks to all of the photographers and make-up artists.

I hope our paths cross again!

All the best!



You cannot believe how proud I felt at that moment. What started out as a conversation between my friend Aimee, of {dbeautyjunkie.com} and I, turned into a successful event, is mind-blowing to me. Aimee and her husband Phil have been doing this event for the past 8 years, where they give the women makeovers, do their nails and have activities for the children.  During our conversation, while she was explaining the day I asked her if they capture the makeover with photos, and she said, well, with a polaroid. This saddened me.  If you are trying to make the woman feel better about herself, a polaroid just isn't going to cut it. I quickly told her of my involvment with Help Portrait and said that we can have a similar event at the shelter, which included a full service photo studio, editing and printing on location.  She was instantly interested.  After a few months of asking for clearance, we finally received our green light to bring in Brent Eysler of Eysler Imaging, Ania Volovique of Ania Volovique Photography, Shazar Kanhai of Shazar Photography and myself to photograph the families.  We were also blessed with Victoria and Elisia from Mary Kay cosmetics to beautify the women before they were photographed by us.

When we arrived at the shelter and started unloading, I do not think the staff really understood what we were about to transform in front of their very eyes; I know this because we were assigned a room that could maybe fit 3 people in it.  Once we set up the two full photo stations in the library, they quickly understood that we meant business and that they were about to be gifted with an incredible gift.  I'm not going to lie and say that the day ran completely smoothly but I will say that in the end, everyone felt like we accomplished our mission, making families feel special and loved.


I wish I was able to fix every single one of the women and their children's problems but I hope for the brief moment that they were in front of our lenses they felt that they were the most important person in the room.


We were not allowed to post pictures of the families for protection of their lives, but below you will see our editing/printing stations and below that you will see us goofing around at an after dinner release at the infamous Patsy's Pizza place.


 photo TheLab.jpg


 photo MothersDayStaff.jpg

 photo d9997369-f129-4cf1-b1d5-c6e7f313434c.jpg

Tags: family
Leave a comment: