I couldn't have been more pleased to have been asked to take photographs at the Benefit to Society campaign launch. After taking photographs for housing associations for over 10 years, it is a campaign close to my heart. 26 housing organisations across the country, are working together to tackle the problem of stereotyping social housing tenants. They are challenging the way the public think and tackling the stigma often associated with social housing tenants.
The launch event was held at the House of Commons and attended by the Housing Minister, Shadow Housing Minister, MPs and tenants from across the country. Despite the snow there was a very good turnout, proving how passionate those involved in the campaign are. Here are a few of the photographs and the places that they have been used.
More information about Benefit to Society can be found at benefittosociety.co.uk
Today I was back at Lansdowne Green with Optivo. We were photographing a fitness club that they have been running for older residents, but whilst we were there also took the opportunity to photograph a resident in her home. Stock photographs of residents are always so useful for newsletters, posters, social media etc.
As the cold wind blows outside, I thought I would warm my website up with some reminders of summer. For the past three years I have photographed International Day at Landsdowne Green for Optivo (formally AmicusHorizon). It is always a fun and vibrant event and each year they've even managed to book wall to wall sunshine.
First stop for the photos is the press release. Each year several have been used in the South London Press. But the photos have a much longer shelf life. As well as capturing the event itself, I'm also asked to take photographs that can be used, in different ways, throughout the year. This is where my ten years of experience of working for various housing providers really helps. As well as looking for great photos, I'm looking for shots that will work in a variety of ways, to give my clients value for money.
Here's what Optivo have to say about working with me:
'Victoria has a great eye for photographing exactly what we need at different events. She takes amazing images every year at our International Day at Lansdowne Green in Stockwell.
The great thing about Victoria’s photographs are the fact they can be used in different ways throughout the year. This includes our website, annual review, other publications, social media and the press.
Victoria makes people feel at ease and, to steal a cliché, her images say more than a thousand words. She captures everything we need in a brief (and more) and we’re always confident Victoria will deliver when she’s booked to cover a job.'
Ross Lidbetter, Communications Officer, Optivo
Here are some of my favourite pictures from the last few years and how they've been used:
A lot can happen in 10 years and that is certainly true for Phoenix Community Housing, who marked their 10th anniversary with an exhibition celebrating their local community. For me, the wonderful thing about working for Phoenix has been seeing ideas turn to reality. With my husband Mark, I also run a film company, End 2 End Productions and in 2007 we made a film to launch Phoenix. Over the years we have got to know the staff and residents and seen the organisation blossom into a major influencer and force for good both within the local community and the housing sector. We've loved being involved. Happy Anniversary Phoenix.
This year I met many wonderful people whose photographs I took for the A2Dominion Annual Report. Of course, the photographs won't only be used in the Annual Report. They are added to the photo library and used throughout the year on different publications.
On Thursday 7 December, Shepherds Bush Housing Group hosted an engagement event between social housing tenants with the Housing and Planning Minister, Alok Sharma. The event was organised on behalf of PlaceShapers for the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG). At such a crucial time for housing, it was a great privilege to photograph the event.
This year was my forth PlaceShapers Conference and once again it was an absolute pleasure to photograph. Good to see many familiar faces.
Every so often A2Dominion ask me to take some photographs of their residents to add to their photo library. This means that when they need photographs for newsletters, websites, leaflets etc they have a pool to draw from. Of course, they could use the usual stock libraries, but the images are much more relatable if they are taken in A2Dominion homes and feature real residents. Today I was taking photographs of older people and we smiled and laughed all day!
Phoenix Community Housing is London’s only resident-led housing association and I am proud to have photographed their journey for the last ten years. All Phoenix residents have the chance to have a say on their services and influence their plans for the future. Every event is an opportunity for staff to consult with residents and none more so than the AGM.
I was out in the sun last week taking photographs of Phoenix Community Housing's repairs team, whilst they continued with their days work.