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Michigan man helping medical workers through quarantine 'Porchrait' series

"Porchrait" proceeds feed doctors & nurses
Posted at 6:05 AM, Apr 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-01 06:06:06-04

MICHIGAN — Boredom.

It's a spark that can light some creative flames.

For Grosse Pointe, Mich., photographer John F. Martin, his creative flame is more like a vibrant wildfire at this point.

"This whole thing started on a lark," says Martin."I was bored on Saturday, and I went to my studio, picked up my cameras, came home, and sent my neighbors a text message. I said, 'Hey, meet me outside in front of our homes around 6 o'clock. I'm going to stroll by with a beer and my camera and take a few pictures' ... and that was it!"

Each family or individual poses on their porch in their own unique style.

Some pose with toilet paper rolls, some in their pajamas drinking wine out of their coffee mug, and some with a somber expression still dressed in scrubs after a day of battling to save lives.

These unique photos depict a households quarantine story, and after posting a few on Facebook the series is now a viral sensation.

It's known as The 'Porchrait' Sessions.

"It gets them out of the house, it gets them smiling, you know, and it's something to break up the monotony of this experience that we're all sharing," explains Martin.

It's also a pretty great keepsake from this time.

Martin says, "You know, as far as the documentary aspect of it goes ... this is a historic event."

"They're gonna frame these photos," Martin muses, "and, 10, 20, 30 years from now they'll look back and say, 'Hey, remember when we were stuck in our houses for a month? You know, wasn't that fun?' And there will be a picture hanging above their fireplace."

What's even better than the visual beauty of this project? The cause. Martin donates most all the proceeds to, as he says, "purchase meals from local restaurants who I know are struggling, and feed our nurses and doctors at our two local hospitals here."

A 'Porchrait' for a purpose.

Martin's viral photo series serves as proof that quarantine boredom mixed with our individual talents is the perfect recipe to create something great.

John F. Martin is based in Metro Detroit, but he says he has a wide array of photographer friends all over the state.

If you're interested in a 'Porchrait,' Martin says you can contact him at his professional Facebook page or his website.

He'd love to connect you with a photographer to create a 'Porchrait' of your own.