Photographer focused on lockdown in Rugby - The Rugby Observer

Photographer focused on lockdown in Rugby

Rugby Editorial 9th Jun, 2020   0

A COMMUNITY photography project has recorded life in Rugby through the coronavirus crisis.

Jamie Gray, a professional freelance photographer, decided to record life in his home town throughout lockdown after finding his work diary decimated by the pandemic.

The former Observer snapper, who has been freelance for eight years after starting his career in regional media, has spent more than a month recording local businesses and members of the community to capture how the town has pulled together in the face of the crisis.

The work – entitled My Town in Lockdown – is now set to appear in print and plans are in the pipeline to exhibit a selection of the 100-plus photographs in the town’s art gallery and museum once lockdown has ended.




Jamie said: “At the start of lockdown, I saw my work diary empty pretty quickly as so many of my commercial bookings were cancelled because of the impact the pandemic was having on my clients and the economy in general.

“I am a photographer, so the choice was either to sit at home and take pictures of my living room or make better use of my time in something that people will hopefully find interesting and will reflect very positively on my home town and its people.


“As I hold a press card, I was classed as a key worker and that allowed me out and about to record the pandemic. I have done 15 threshold portraits of businesses or local people on their doorstep as well as a range of other photographs which hopefully just shine a light on good things in the community.

“I’m not surprised to see the level of kindness and support which I have witnessed in my community. It’s always been there, the pandemic has been a chance for that kindness to be seen.”

Jamie has photographed the Clap for Carers at Rugby St Cross and was also allowed access to the hospital and also features local firms in the NHS supply chain.

He has received some funding from Rugby Borough Council, and has already opened talks with Rugby Art Gallery and Museum about the photographs being exhibited.

“Clearly the Covid-19 crisis is unprecedented and has meant heartbreak for hundreds of thousands of people, but I think it has also allowed people to get more in touch with their local areas – be that just getting to know their neighbours better or using local retailers and suppliers.

“This project reflects that sense of spirit in what, hopefully, is a time that will not be seen again.”

A selection of Jamie’s shots will feature in a specially-commissioned book, which will be available at www.jamiegrayphotography.co.uk/my-town-in-lockdown-zine

Jamie is donating 20 per cent of sales to the Friends of St Cross hospital charity.

 

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