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Charlottesville Photographers Offer Free Portraits

December 5, 2013

For the sixth year in a row, a group of Charlottesville photographers is using its talent to give back.

On Saturday, Dec. 7, anyone can show up to The Haven to get their portrait taken for free.

It's all part of the Help-Portrait movement, which started in 2009.

Gina Proulx is one of about 20 photographers donating her skill and supplies. She says the photographers want to take pictures of all of Charlottesville.

"Anybody who walks in the door, I don't care where you come from, what your economic base is, what you're interested in...doesn't matter. Come on in," said Proulx. "We'll have some hair and makeup people to make you look fabulous. We'll make your photograph and we'll give the photograph to you."

Proulx says, while some people soak up the spotlight, for others, it's a big deal to get in front of the lens.

"We also get the people who are quite emotional about it. They haven't been pampered in a long time. They haven't had someone tell them they're beautiful. They haven't had someone make a photograph of them and show them they're beautiful. So, we get that, too, and it gives you goose bumps when it happens," she said.

Proulx says the Charlottesville Photography Initiative has spearheaded the event locally. Last year, about 200 pictures were taken at the event.

Her advice to portrait subjects is to be themselves and arrive with a smile.

"Just come as you are. We're going to make who you are even a little bit better, we're going to make a photograph of it and hand it to you there that afternoon," said Proulx.

The Haven is located 112 East Market Street in Charlottesville. The event will run from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. this Saturday.

For more information about Help-Portrait, click HERE.

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