‘Take and give back’ Photography ethos.

13 08 2013

Keith Bailey, photographer and teacher reports on his latest project.

It’s been a great pleasure and privilege spending the last few years working in India and The Philippines and traveling with my camera to a number of Asian countries. I’ve taken my fair share of portraits of local people and proudly shown these off as framed prints in my home or on flickr. Recently I’ve decided to embark on a project of ‘taking and giving back’. Whenever I take a portrait and am able to, I give back a printed copy to the subject of the photo. After all, the image belongs as much to them as it does to me.

So here are a few examples and an invitation to anyone to use this blog to share their own experiences of ‘taking and giving back’.

Mr Singh – seller of peacock feathers in Jaisalmer, India

Mr. Singh


Mr Singh sells peacock feathers for a living and is one of the few licensed sellers in India. I took this photo of him outside Jaisalmer Fort and then had to find a way to get the photo printed and back to him the next day as we were moving on. Enquiries about photo printing led me to a very dusty upstairs office in the town which had a small desk top printer and a few sheets of glossy printing paper. Duly armed with a print out I tracked Mr Singh down and he was very grateful to receive the print. He had on him a slightly worn travel magazine with his image on the front cover. He was very proud to share it with me.

Artisans in Fez, Morocco.

I’m grateful to Jessica Stephens at Culture Vultures for helping me out with these.  She runs an ‘artisan tour’ in Fez which enables tourists to meet and talk with some of the artisans in the Fez souks and the tannery. As a photographer I really like the tour as it means you have  direct contact with the people in the portraits. The artisans were kind enough to let me take photographs and Jessica delivered my prints back to their owners.

Mohammed. (Photo courtesy of Jessica Stephens)




Abbas is the last carpenter left working in the Carpenters’ souk. He uses his basic tools and considerable skills to service other artisans in Fez. For example, he supplies the shoe makers with foot-shaped wooden blocks and the knife maker with wooden handles. He also takes one-off commissions for items such as wooden legs.

More images of the Fez artisans

Slum near Manila Domestic Airport

Girl in Manila slums


I regret not getting to know this little girl’s name. I took this photo and returned a few weeks later, but I was unable to find the girl. However I was really lucky to come across her mother who was so delighted to receive the photo because the girl had been sent away to school and the photo served as a precious reminder of her daughter.

Saturday service at ISM

Andrea & Aira


Two Filipino girls from the Young Focus (Love2Learn) project in Manila supported by the International School Manila as part of the service learning programme. After a Saturday morning of fun and games, we presented each of the children with a portrait to take home to their parents.

Original post http://shutterprioritiesblog.wordpress.com



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