Without a doubt there is a great deal of skepticism in communities of color, my community, when it comes to COVID-19 safety and vaccinations. And given the history in our country, rightfully so.
However, when we do have the science and the evidence, we understand the necessity to do what we need to do to keep our families and our communities safe, and we go into action. We always have, and we always will.
Much to my disappointment the story of this part of our communities seems to be lost in the sauce of focusing on doubt and uncertainty. Our conviction, our dedication, our support for one another... and the way we personalize our call to action, just doesn't seem to be how our communities are portrayed.
Enough is enough.
Since the beginning of the pandemic our communities have taken every necessary step to save precious lives. From sanitizing everything under the sun to socially distancing to wearing our masks, our communities have been doing our part to get us all through this pandemic. We HAVE been wearing our masks, and we will continue to do so until we no longer have to.
And when it comes to our mask wearing, we've covered it all (literally) and dare I say stylishly as well! Mask wearing has evolved into a form of expression that is unique and reflects who we are, what we stand for, and why we continue to wear our masks. This is the narrative that I hope to reflect with my voice.
I had the pleasure of photographing members of my community (in a COVID-safe environment!) to help emphasize my point: we wear our masks, been wearing our masks, and will continue to wear our masks because we care for everyone. These portraits reflect the incredible community that I know and love. A community of people from all walks of life including first responders, veterans, community leaders and business owners who answer the call to action for their neighbors, friends, and family. And I hope these portraits serve as a reminder that at times its necessary to tune out the noise, look around and understand that there isn't a single narrative for communities of color, particularly during this pandemic.
I want to thank Lynn, Deborah, Alfonso, Kevin, Tony, Gary, Matt, Davis, Donna, Rob and everyone who I wasn't able to connect with for helping share this side of our community story, and a big shout out to @laymrob for our lighting.
Peace, Love and Soul,