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The Gambia

Most days I photograph strangers.

When I knock, they open the door onto their lives. I try to gain their trust.

And it is a gift I don’t take lightly. 

My job is share their stories in an honest way, and in the process…my own story. Sometimes the pictures take on a life I never imagined. 

This past month via the best part of Facebook – I was turned onto a project by Harry Dwinnell, a peace corp worker based in The Gambia. 

Harry took my book, “The Unforgettable Photograph” over to Africa with him, and shared it with the kids in his village recreate the photographs. 

The book is filled with pictures of my children, along with others, doing the most everyday things in ways that completely astonished me. When Harry shared my pictures with the kids in his village, they wanted to recreate the photographs.

His pictures blow my mind!

They are all about finding that place we are all connected. All about the power of photography, which often gets lost in the volume of photos we comb through everyday.

Tonight I was in Pittsburgh showing Harry’s project to my mother. Looking at moments that occurred in her very house – recreated across the world with children I will never meet – was so moving. This must be what it is like for a playwright to see their work produced in a foreign land.

I remember watching an August Wilson production in London once – a play which took place in my hometown of Pittsburgh. It was incredible being so far away and still so close to home.

Since I discovered the project (through being tagged on Facebook!), Harry and I have been in touch and are now making images for the other to recreate.

My 7-year-old Asher is totally transfixed by this project. He wants to do a video of himself dancing and send the music over for the kids in The Gambia to dance to. 


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