by Lianna Norman | April 23, 2020

This Orlando Photographer is Taking Front Porch Portraits to Spread Some Joy

In times of darkness and uncertainty, there are always people trying to be a light. Here's to them.

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Kelly Rodriguez (left) and her son William. Photography courtesy of Kelly Rodriguez

Standing on the sidewalk of her Orlando neighborhood, Kelly Rodriguez aims the camera at a family dressed in color-coordinated outfits on their front porch. It’s not a birthday or graduation or any sort of milestone, it’s just a happy excuse for the family to dress up and get out of their house, even if that only means venturing to the front stoop. The professional photographer is using her camera to spread a little joy in her neighborhood by snapping portraits of families outside of their homes in exchange for donations to the local Ronald McDonald House. So far her portrait project has raised $1,425 and even more in donated supplies. Beyond supporting a great cause, Rodriguez’s neighbors are thankful for a reason to put on dress clothes during the stay-at-home order.  She even captured images of a couple on their quarantined wedding day. “I think everyone right now has this deep desire for connecting to anybody,” Rodriguez said. “And through this, everyone felt so a part of something.”

KNOW SOMEONE SPREADING LIGHT IN YOUR COMMUNITY?

In times of crisis, most of us reach out to help our closest friends and family, but then there are those folks, like Rodriguez, who go above and beyond to help everyone they can. These people bring light to those around them and make this painful season a little more bearable. There are Floridians out there organizing food drives, sewing masks and finding creative ways to help their communities connect with positivity campaigns, shop-local initiatives and virtual gatherings.

If you know a fellow Floridian who deserves to be recognized for being a bright spot in their community, nominate them in our Rays of Light campaign. We want to tell these stories in hopes that they can bring us all a little closer while we have to stay a part. Keep an eye out for stories about Florida’s community heroes at flamingomag.com

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