By Erica Thomas, managing editor
TRUSSVILLE — During the coronavirus crisis, many families are struggling with staying at home. Whether they have lost their jobs or have to stay home to care for their children, some Trussville families are making the best out of a trying time.
One couple that lives in Stockton is using their talent to bring smiles to neighbors. Katie and Alec Dixon own a photography business. They decided to offer free porch sessions to anyone interested. They call it The Front Porch Project.
Alec Dixon said he was inspired by another photographer who did the same in his neighborhood, in Tennessee.
“I saw he had posted it in his neighborhood Facebook group,” said Dixon. “Some of the families did funny poses and got dressed up.”
So, the Dixon’s got to work on a plan. They had to map out a route and consider the time of day they could get the best shots at each home.
“We had to take the time to figure out where the sun would be at different times,” said Dixon.
After he posted the idea in Stockton’s Facebook group, he said he was surprised at the reaction he received.
“That post just blew up,” Dixon said. “It was really to bring a little bit of light to the season we are in. A lot of people like dressing up and feeling like a star.”
The couple is already accustomed to taking daily walks in their neighborhood, but Dixon said photography walks has helped them meet a lot of their neighbors.
“This was supposed to be something fun for the neighborhood and for people that we’ve never met,” said Dixon. “It was a great way to meet people but it was also meant to raise money.”
The Dixon’s asked anyone interested in photos to donate to a special cause.
“One of the biggest reasons we did it is that we encouraged people to donate,” said Dixon. “Any money that you would normally spend on photographs, take some of that, if you are able, and donate it to a company that’s trying to make masks, or buy some meals for nurses.”
According to Dixon, several of his neighbors did just that. Although he is not sure of how much money has been raised, he said he is sure it’s been enough to make a difference.
The photography sessions also made a difference for the families of Stockton. They were able to take a break from quarantine, dress us and have fun.
“We had families that got dressed up and had funny stuff,” said Dixon. “One family was dressed up as Kiss and had a sign that said “KISS coronavirus goodbye!’ We also had people in their pajamas with a bottle of wine, and their kid with a video game controller and Cheetos.”
Dixon also said the porch sessions helped some families get their Easter pictures taken.
Many of the families thanked the Dixon’s for giving them a reason to get dressed up.
“It brought us a lot of joy, as photographers, to be able to use our time and talents to bless people that,” Dixon said. “Some of them don’t have a lot of joy and hope right now. You could tell that having these little impromptu photo shoots brought them a lot of joy.”
“It was just fun,” said Dixon. “We love taking photos and we haven’t been able to take photos for a while now.”
You can learn more about Katie and Alec Photography by clicking here.