Alli, who is a close and dear friend of mine, started the non-profit, Shaking Hands, to raise awareness that HIV is not limited to the demographics typically associated with HIV. In 2015, someone very close to her suddenly lost his life due to complications around an undiagnosed case of HIV.
If you have been following the blog for a while, you may remember a feature of Chris and Alli from a few years ago. I wanted to share that happy memory here.
His name was Chris. He was a 35-year-old, fun-loving, athletic, heterosexual, drug-free, white male. He was also a friend of mine. It was shocking to find out Chris was infected with HIV. It was more devastating to know that his life could have been saved, had he known his status earlier.
Alli founded Shaking Hands [with HIV] to start the conversation, so that people can anonymously get tested. Shaking Hands provides anonymous, at home HIV tests, free of charge to those who want to know their status. If they do find out they are infected, they can then start the journey to learn more about the life-saving drug treatments available to them, with support along the way.
When Alli asked me to capture moments from the Shaking Hands launch party, I of course agreed. These are some of my favorite photos from the launch party that I felt so privileged and humbled to be part of.
To help raise money at the event, there was a raffle with tons of great items, such as Atlanta United tickets, various restaurant gift cards, gift baskets and more.
Everyone had a great time coming out to support Alli and Shaking Hands.
Please visit www.shakinghandswithHIV.com to learn more and to donate.
To celebrate the first day of summer, we’re announcing that for the first time, VI Photography will be offering SUMMER Mini Sessions. This will be held on one day in August – and only for one day – so stay tuned for the date!
Speaking of summer sessions, check out this throwback session from last year of Jessica and her family! They did such a great job of coordinating their outfits with their color scheme – blue, teal and tan (not to mention those beautiful beach tans.) I love the way Jessica incorporated both colors for her son’s shirt. I couldn’t have picked better outfits.
Their outfits also compliment the gorgeous scenery at Vickery Creek Trail. Its beautiful trees, creek, and waterfall in the background made for some great pictures, and a great place to stay cool and comfortable during a summer session!
Inspired to do a summer session yet? Then this summer may be your perfect opportunity! Mini sessions are only offered a couple times each year, and they’re first come, first serve! Keep an eye on our website and social media pages for an announcement with all of the official details (coming soon!)
Debbie and Jason asked if I could photograph their Miles’ baptism. Miles is 6-months old, so instead of doing a regular portrait session, of course, I was happy to photograph this event for them. The event took place at the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in downtown Atlanta. Most of their family and friends were there to celebrate Miles!
I had the privilege to photograph the 2016 Boys and Girls Club of Metro Atlanta’s Rising Star event this weekend. The event was hosted by Matt Ryan, quarterback of the Atlanta Falcons, and his amazing wife, Sarah – who has been volunteering several days a week in the clubs for the past 7+ years!
The event was held at Atlanta’s new Center for Civil and Human Rights Museum. Honorees heard from an executive from LexisNexis, Stephanie Blank, and Matt Ryan.
One of the best parts of photographing events, is getting to take part as an audience member. An inspiring message I walked away from this weekend was Matt’s response to one of the Youth of the Year Honoree’s question around bullying. Matt was asked how he overcomes the challenge of negative speak (tv, fans, social media, etc.) when he had a bad game. What advice can you give kids who are being bullied overcome that challenge. His response was something his wife, Sara, taught him. A ship doesn’t sink because of the water that comes into the boat. It sinks because of holes in the boat. You have to build a tough exterior and realize the water coming in (negative speak) means nothing…
Here are some photos from the event.
Special thanks to Lauren Race at the Boys & Girls Club for asking me to capture these moments… and photo credit to Lauren for taking this last image:-)