Photo assignment leads to social distancing shoot

Families pose for social distance shots
By: Todd Martin
With a photography assignment due and everyone ready to venture out into the sun, a group of families went out to play and to pose.
Ellison High School senior Austin Allen, a photography student at the KISD Career Center is one of several seniors documenting his life at home during the continuing school closure.
Instructor John Smallwood, also working from home these days, assigned his students recently to photograph families.
Austin’s mom, Lynn Allen, a teacher at Montague Village Elementary School invited some of her colleagues to a “social distance photo shoot” and three families participated – each at their own home.
Children and adults posed with toys and other sets and the senior photography student shot family photos at the separate houses. One family broke out their masks for their portrait.
With everyone missing friends and colleagues, Austin and Lynn Allen agreed it was a good way to make a connection while documenting a unique time.
“We are a family at Montague and even though all this is going on, we still are able to stay connected,” Lynn said.
“It allowed me to get out of the house in a time when we aren’t able to get out much,” said Austin, who actually attended Montague Village Elementary. He praised the families who participated and his teacher for providing equipment to continue to work on projects.
“Taking photographs has been more difficult, but not impossible,” the senior said of the shelter in place restrictions.
“We are living in a time that is like no other and I love that my son is able to document the happenings through photography,” his mother pointed out.
With graduation looming, Austin said he is hoping for one last chance to see friends and teachers before the school year ends.

Photos contributed by Austin Allen