Photo Assignment #9 is a pretty big departure for me as an instructor. This was originally assigned around the 4th of July in the United States. My audience is global however, so I was trying to be seasonally appropriate but at the same time find something that everyone would enjoy participating in.

We live in interesting times for sure, whatever your political affiliation. As a rule, I don’t bring politics into the show, but as an American – I have an amazing freedom. I get to make my living every day doing exactly what I love. I know this is not common and I don’t take that for granted. I think that’s a problem in our world today though – many of us who have take a lot of things for granted, so I decided to have people offer their interpretations of Personal Freedom as the subject.

This is one of my favorite assignments to date. People shared some really intimate ideas and subjects as you can see below. Everything from documenting voting for the first time, recovering from surgery, a quiet morning with the kids still asleep, sexual orientation, gender identity, respect for those who gave their lives for us, driving for the first time as an adult… I was really taken back by the work people shared. It went well beyond photography. It all reminded me why I do this stuff to begin with. I’m really proud of the viewers on this one – it restores a great faith in humanity for me.

Viewer Work:

Original Instruction Video:

Viewer Submission Video: