Letter: Photographer thanks participants in Front Steps Project, $1,400 donated


One thing we can all agree on is Covid has definitely changed all of our lives in some way; some more than others.

As wedding and event photographers, we were just starting to crawl out of slow season and I was so excited to finally get back to work. If you don’t know me well, I am a very goal oriented person. It wouldn’t feel normal if I didn’t write out a list of things to do for the next day before I go to bed – like I do each day. For me, this business is not only our main source of income, it’s my passion and I enjoy it so much.

Now I’m suddenly left with nothing to do, and this is a feeling I haven’t had in quite some time. Suddenly I was bored.. What is that?!

I knew deep down that this uncertainty about the future that I was feeling was affecting others as well. I had questions floating through my mind like,“How are we going to pay for our home? How will we buy food?” And, “With Justin still fortunate to be working his other job, how are we all going to stay healthy?”

I’ll be honest: there was a lot of stocking up on boxed wine, unhealthy meals for comfort, and late nights of worry while endlessly scrolling through news and Facebook. One of those nights I came across a news article about Boston photographer Cara Soulia’s Idea for The Front Steps Project.

The project offers families that are asked to stay at home a way to share a moment and document their experience being quarantined with social distancing photography. (This means I used a lens that was able to photograph over 100ft from my subjects to take their photos on their front steps) Cara Soulia was so overwhelmed that she asked others all across the country to join in on this challenge.

The biggest thing that stood out about doing this project to me was the fact that I could document this weird, unsure time in our lives.

My goal as a photographer has always been to capture the realness and personalities of the people through my lens and to document different stages of their lives. So… what better time than now?

When I learned about this project, I couldn’t sit around and let this opportunity pass me by.

This project isn’t about exposure or notoriety – its to help others. We chose to pass all of the donations from The Front Step Projects to a Burrillville based program called “Between The Cracks.” They are a lifesaver for families that are in a tough spot with money and have nowhere else to turn for help. When we were starting our little family, we struggled badly, and we have had to call upon similar help, so it wasn’t a question of who we wanted to work with. Now more than ever, families are going to need help, and the thought of someone being able to keep their lights on or their homes warm is huge for us.

I was able to photograph over 40 families within a week.

I had already scheduled another week of sessions until I decided to stop and follow Governor Gina Raimondo’s advice once she called stay at home order.

With a week’s worth of photos, I managed to raise $1,400 of donations to benefit the Between the Cracks organization!

Although I am not photographing any more front step photos and staying home to prevent the spread of the virus, if you would like to donate anyway, here is a link to the Between the Cracks Donation page.

We decided to take one of our own this morning. We literally rolled out of bed for this, because you know what? This right here.. is us, right now, living through this quarantine.

Meagan Sharum

Meagan Sharum is the owner of Sharum Photography

Photographer Meagan Sharum poses with husband Justin and sons Able and Liam.
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