The photography students at Montana State University (MSU) offered free, high-quality portraits to 43 families who were financially unable to visit a studio this December.
Called “MSU Community Portrait Day”, the students in professor Alexis Pike’s lighting class set up chairs on a white background, receiving parents and children referred from local organizations.
"Times being what they are, I knew that professional family portraits might be considered more of a luxury than a need. With the skills of our students and the facilities we have at hand, the project seemed only natural.” Pike told MSU’s news service.
Students also raised $350 for toys, from selling T-shirts and soliciting donations, given to the children as presents and lent to them as they wait for their portrait’s prints. On November 5, the Buffalo Wild Wings eatery donated 20 per cent of their sales to the cause during a fundraising event.
The local camera shop, F-11 Photographic Supplies, prints the images taken in the holiday spirit of giving for free.
Professor Pike brought the community portrait taking from her old job in Oregon and the annual event is now in its fifth year.
The Montanan students fill the positions of greeters, digital editors, photographers, photo assistants, lighting technicians and child minders for the portrait day.