We had an opportunity to highlight the back story of the Shutdown Stories Project on NikonRumors. We shared some editorial insights into how and why we shot the photos the way we did.
So why the smiles and overall pleasant demeanor? When we started this project, we did it to humanize those affected by the shutdown in the region. We had seen enough distraught federal worker shutdown stories portrayed on cable news networks, and felt they were over-dramatized and not indicative of the community members we know that have been affected by the shutdown.
Further, the affected federal workers wanted to use the shots for their own purposes. We thought utility was important. For example, if one of the subjects chooses to use the image as their LinkedIn profile picture and gets a new job, we think that’s a win.