June 3, 2021
So I had the pleasure of photographing the Blue Heart Foundation‘s 2021 graduating class a few weeks ago. According to their website, “[t]he Blue Heart Foundation offers a solid holistic mentoring program through adult and peer mentorship, that facilitates positive interactions, education, empowerment and emotional well being that is a critical part of their lives.” This was a great experience and chance for me to give back to the community. I met Tracy Morris, the Executive Director, through a Facebook group that I am in. He reached out about me photographing two events for the Blue Heart Foundation’s 2021 graduating class. I could tell watching him interact with the young men that he truly cares about them.
The first event I shot was to get some formal group and individual photos of the young men. I shot the first event at Hidden Gems venue in La Mesa, California. This is a great Black-owned venue that hosts all types of events including baby showers, weddings, parties, and more. You should go check it out if you’re looking for a venue. It was a pretty sunny day so I had to break out the strobes to ensure I could get an even light on all the young men. Overall, I think the images turned out great.
The second event I participated in was the College Signing Day event. For this event, I photographed the young men announcing their college selection (think draft day). Everyone was so proud of these young men. Their families were there…many of them received scholarships…it was just a great event. I could definitely see the joy on their parents’ faces seeing their young men announcing their college selection. Each young man also gave a small speech sharing their thoughts and gratitude to their families, friends, and the Blue Heart Foundation for the support.
Each young men had a section of the indoor area dedicated to them. Their section had images from when they were younger and other items that represented who they are. It was such a privilege to be a part of this great event! I got to photograph young men moving into a new chapter of their lives.