photographing disabled


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Aug 2, 2010
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i am going to take some photographs of the clients i used to take care of...they all have different disablities and some are in wheelchairs...i want to give them all something special.
I'm not sure though if I should take it with the wheelchair in the frame or try to get close ups on the faces...they are a bunch of characters and are not ashamed of their wheelchairs and neither am I...But i don't know how nice it would look with the wheelchairs in the pictures...
also some of them are unable to make eye contact, any suggestions on that??? and i don't mean like won't some just can't due to disabilities and blindness- so getting there attention wont work...
any help would be appreciated.
BTW I won't post the pictures for their privacy since they can't give their consent... thanks
Lotus Love
That is a tough one I personally would probably take a few of both and I wouldn't worry to much about the eye contact if they are physically unable. Get them doing something fun or something they enjoy doing. People doing activities of any kind is always a lot better looking than people doing nothing
I ended my college doing a similar project to promote disability awareness, I would suggest you treat these folk the same as everyone else and just get on with the job, whatever disability they have they won't mind it being included, its them. Personally I'd just do my usual, put the sitter at ease, keep chatting and shoot the best expressions you see, whether its a smile, a knowing look, whatever. I find that most people who have difficulty with anyone with a disability is they usually try communicating through a third party, having worked with these clients you should be over that and be their friend, as usual. Now crack on and give these folk some outstanding portraiture. H
thanks, it is hard to figure out sometimes but yes as Flash says i am close to them all....all 60 of them. taking pictures doing stuff is usually okay but im going to be taking them for their yearly photos that go in their files...usually they just get a quick pic that is out if focus and makes them look horrible, there are some that love taking pictures and others you just have to say wow too because they are soo beautiful they could be models if only they were able to. I Love them all and hope I can give them something to keep even if they don't know what it is...most never get to have their picture taken in a portrait type setting:Joker:
This response is probably too late to help. But the main thing that I would do is make sure that I take the photographs at their level. From someone that spends far too much time in a wheel chair; no one wants to be looked down on. Having someone tower over you can make you feel insignificant. If you get on their level, they will feel much more comfortable.
not too late....and thanks a lot...good point...i don't even think anymore how i interact with them because i'm soo close to usually hugging on them and sitting around joking and playing with them...after a while of working with the developmentally disabled you no longer look at them as disabled their just another person...

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