Street photographer Marina Burnel has turned the Covid19 pandemic into an opportunity to create photo memories for families in lockdown, while raising much-needed funds for Maxfield Park Children’s Home in Jamaica.
The idea, Marina says, was borrowed from The Front Step Project – a US-based project launched by two photographers during the pandemic. With social distancing being fully practiced, photos are taken of families in lockdown. The proceeds raised go towards charity.
Marina and friend Jennifer Ruparell joined forces to launch the Jamaican equivalent of that project – calling it Pickcha Mi Yaad.
“We have shot more than 50 families and raised nearly US$2000 since we started. The families really try to represent how they have spent their time during Covid. Some pose with their laptops, others with wine,” Marina says.
She has also committed to taking the project into an important next phase. “I’ve decided to go deeper and document Covid in the streets of Jamaica, and the new way of life as we know it,” she says.
While Jamaica is still under strict nighttime curfew, Marina has secured permits to shoot in communities throughout the island, and has since ventured out to Ocho Rios, Montego Bay and Negril to cover the vast array of experiences across demographics.
“I just want to have a comprehensive series of images, representing a wide cross section of life in Jamaica – from uptown to downtown,” she says. By the end of the pandemic, Marina hopes to have a solid piece of work ready to raise more funds to help those in need.
Marina was born in France and has lived in Jamaica for the past five years, where she honed her the skill of street photography by taking pictures in Kingston ghettos. She is known for using salvaged zinc from inner city communities as a backdrop for her prints.
Raw and unfiltered, Marina’s work gives reverence to those who are often overlooked in society. Her work has been featured in Vanity Fair, as well as leading French and Brazilian publications.
Visit Marina Burnel Photography online
All photos are contributed.