In 2016, working with a network of local homeless service providers and a volunteer team of photographers, the Photo Project provided Fujifilm single-use cameras to 100 people affected by homelessness. The resulting images from the 68 cameras that were returned revealed slices of everyday life and unique views of the city. The MyNew Orleans Photo Project produced several gallery shows and a calendar sold over the holiday season, and kept participants engaged with a series of opportunities – from choosing the photos to submit to the calendar contest to being part of the gallery shows to helping with calendar sales at local art markets.
Over a period of months from May until October, the Photo Project engages participants with a series of meetings designed to get them started with photography and encouraging them to look at their resulting images as art and self expression and a way to tell their personal stories. To kick off the project, 100 participants are given disposable cameras along with the training on how to use them. Professional photographers volunteer to provide training on how to set up shots that are impactful and creative. Over the next few months, the Project stays engaged with participants by assisting them in selecting the photos they wish to submit to the photo contest and display in gallery shows. Participants receive copies of their photos and are encouraged to bring friends and family to see their photos displayed in the gallery. Finally, their submitted photos go in front of a professional judging panel and the top 14 are selected for the calendar, with another 5 thematic winners. Winners receive prizes in the form of Walmart or VISA gift cards. Every participant receives a copy of the calendar as well.