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Behind The Mask – capturing portraits of healthcare workers

Stacey-Hatton---2020-Vision-Behind-the-Mask project in Preston Park Rock Gardens-NHS-Photography-by-Brighton-Portrait-Photographer-Emma-Bailey

2020 Vision Project is a collective of UK portrait photographers who created a visual and historic tribute to nationwide healthcare workers. With visual stories from each photographer, we reflected dedication, resilience, teamwork and extraordinary patient care, throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. Each photographer shared their skills to capture portraits of the person, behind the mask to express the human story. Each healthcare worker was photographed outside of healthcare environments across the UK.

The effect on care homes during the pandemic was traumatic for many involved, the residents and also the staff working to not only save them from Covid, but to maintain a consistent level of care. The mental health of all was dramatically affect. A good friend of mine was an Activity Co-ordinator at a local care home and I wanted to show off her extraordinary personality and zeal which can be hidden behind the mask.

The shoot took place in a rock garden in Preston Park where she loved to walk on her days off. There was one Canon Speedlight diffused through a Lastolite brolly and grip, a great mobile set up. After photographing Stacey, the camera stayed on its tripod and I light different areas of the frame, intending to composite various areas in after. The shoot took place at sunset, with  diffused cloud.

The resulting exhibition of Behind The Mask, was a wonderfully varied collection of people - their personalities shinning through, along with their own stories. In challenging times, there are always inspiring people.

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