I was honoured to be asked to be involved in the Invisible Britain: Portraits of Hope and Resilience book earlier on in the year. Such a strong team of people organising with a great bunch of photographers and participants telling poignant and absorbing stories. You can read more about it all over on the Invisible Britain website.
'People don’t want to be felt sorry for, they just want to be heard'
I photographed Marie and her daughter Olivia on Easter Sunday. Marie was dressed in her lovely yellow shirt, returning from church - ‘a happy colour’ she said. She is one of the strongest people I have met who has been through numerous challenges in her life and works tirelessly in the community for other people. Her own living circumstances see her remain on the economic breadline but after years of volunteering she is now working two days a week for a local charity, doing great things at a community bakery in a high rise flat in the Gorbals. Marie recounts her story in the book alongside over 40 other people.
“Most of what I have was given to me”
Photographing Marie opens up many questions in photography: about representation, about dignity; perhaps challenging what some viewers expect those who live under the poverty line to look like. Photography is powerful and must be part of redressing the stereotypes, the cliches, the expected. It is a long and interesting conversation - one I look forward to expanding on.
The book is released on November the 1st and Marie will join myself, Paul Sng and Kat Dlugosz at the Filmhouse on the 10th of November on the panel. As a founding activist of The Poverty Truth Commission here in Glasgow, I look forward to the discussion and expert information that Marie will offer the audience.