Local photographer Jennifer Loberg is giving families of children with special needs children a chance to shine this spring.
Loberg, who runs Jennifer Michelle Photography, created the Let It Shine event, which provides free photo sessions to 10 families of children with special needs. It started April 12 and will run until April 25.
“In 2020, I had the opportunity to photograph a family of a child who was autistic. It was an eye opening experience, as I realized it can be a challenge to book a photographer for these families,” Loberg said.
“It can bring added stress to the child, they might not be having a good day, and these families sometimes choose not to spend the money.”
So, Loberg thought about giving families who otherwise wouldn’t book a photographer a chance to have their children captured in a safe, inclusive environment, with no limits on time affecting whatever might come up during a session.
“I had so many messages from families telling me they had aborted photography for that reason. As a photographer, I believe everyone needs the opportunity to have their stories captured, and this has been on my heart. It’s a way to use my talent and skills to give back,” said Loberg.
Families filled out a questionnaire so that Loberg could to tailor the experience to them specifically. She said most people requested a lifestyle photography session, which will run as long as needed for the kids to become comfortable.
“Some of the families I’ll be shooting had exciting milestones. A family had their first grandchild to be graduating, others have never had family photos,” she said.
Loberg will be sharing the families’ photos and stories on her Jennifer Michelle Photography Facebook page.
Depending on the interest and how it goes, Let It Shine could become an annual thing, she said.
Email reporter Dillon Giancola at email@example.com