Doorstep Portrait - photography of Lancashire residents during the lockdown
- Credit: Roger Moore Photography
Photographer Roger Moore has been recording families in lockdown in their gardens
The way we dealt with the Coronavirus pandemic will no doubt the subject of much discussion in the months and years to come. Each government decision will be pored over and the impacts considered, but on a human level, the effect of the lockdown has varied from place to place and household to household.
Lockdown has been different for residents of a town centre terrace and for people in large houses with expansive gardens, but photographer Roger Moore has captured a cross-section of people and experiences with his Doorstep Portraits project.
His pictures reveal the common elements that have bound us all together during the lockdown – his subjects’ sense of humour shines through in many of the shots, as does their love for the people they have spent the time with.
In one a mother’s pride in her daughter, an occupational therapist at Blackpool Victoria, is obvious as they sit on the step of their Marton home. In another, two young women scream silently from the other side of a locked gate on a Blackpool alley beside their home. It’s a playful scream, but one most of us can relate to.
In other shots, children play while their parents look on – it could be anywhere at any time. But it wasn’t, it was in lockdown. Otherwise the children would have been at school, the parents at work. If it were a weekend, they might be at the park, the beach or on a day-trip. But they’re not, they’re in their garden - the only outdoor space many families had access to for some weeks.
‘We have all been through the same thing and the pictures are about capturing that moment in time,’ says Wrea Green-based Roger, who left his previous job in marketing almost 20 years ago to become a photographer.
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‘The Doorstep Portraits project started when Caroline and Alex nextdoor had a baby in the early weeks of lockdown.
‘I really felt for them because she had to give birth on her own and family hadn’t been able to meet the new baby, Joanie. I offered to take some pictures of the family and then started to offer doorstep portraits to other people in the village.
‘Some of the houses I have been to have very little garden, others are mansions with beautiful outdoor spaces, but most people have been glad of the chance to get out and to have someone else to talk to. I think people have been humbled by the situation as well.
‘This has been a very worrying time for a lot of people. Some have been in lockdown with their families, some with their pets, some are young couples, some are older couples – there has been a whole range of people. That’s what I love about my work: the diverse range of people I get to meet, people interest me.’
Roger, 43, grew up in Leyland and now lives on the Fylde Coast with his partner Steph and their young son Jonah who will turn one in August. He is also dad to Sophia, 12, nine-year-old Oscar and Rhea, five.
He has a portfolio full of work for commercial and private clients amassed since he bought his camera kit with a loan from his dad in 2001.
He is donating a proportion of the money from each Doorstep Portrait to the Blackpool-based NHS charity Blue Skies Hospital Fund.
‘My mum, Margaret Moore, created floral designs and I started by taking pictures of her designs,’ Roger adds. ‘I have gone on to do commercial work for high-end businesses across the North West, including Bowker in Preston.’
Among his other clients since he moved to the Fylde Coast in 2008, is chef Paul Rowley and the pair have now teamed up with guitarist James Edgar and Lytham florists Bond & Bloom to create bespoke isolation celebration events.
‘Our first one was Paul and Rebecca’s wedding anniversary but we have others coming up in the Fylde and the Ribble Valley,’ Roger says. ‘Clients can choose the food, the music, the flowers and photography – it’s totally bespoke, they don’t have to have all of that.’