Real People Affected by the Shutdown

Federal food line at the #chefsforfeds pop-up World Center Kitchen.

Last week Kirth Bobb and I published our Shutdown Stories Project.  The project was well received by local and national media, with coverage provided by WUSA-9, Nikon Rumors, PetaPixel and Exposed DC.

As the Shutdown continues, we’re continuing to look at continuing our photographic documentation of the ongoing crisis. Our concern for our family, neighbors, and community members directly impacted by the crisis only continues.

Some of My Favorite Portraits So Far

The Shutdown Stories Project is a photographic essay telling stories of individuals affected by the federal shutdown. Here are some of my favorite articles so far.

Shutdown Story – Lona Saccomando 

Lona Saccomando serves the country at the Department of Homeland Security. Her family is down to one income and is depleting their savings. Luckily, they have enough for now. Lona sees a silver lining in that she enjoys time with her children and is getting more serious about her personal photography goals during the shutdown.

Shutdown Story – Mel Harper

Mel Harper works at the National Gallery of Art. She is a mother and needs each and every one of her paychecks to pay bills. She will likely be late for her February mortgage payment. Mel was piloting a new project to invite DC area artists to the National Gallery. That program will have to be postponed because of the Shutdown, possibly until next year.

Shutdown Story – Brian Ottens

Brian Ottens works at NASA (we loved his telescope as a prop!). While the Shutdown continues, he jogs with neighbors every morning after they get their kids to school. They share stories of how to make it without ruining their credit. Some examples include how to file for unemployment in DC and MD, whose credit union will allow a delay in the car payment, and who picked up a side hustle.