Monday, January 3, 2011

Your photographic talent can make a difference in the life of a family.

While we're on the subject of making changes for 2011, I'd like to introduce a new wrinkle to the discussion.

Many of you may be familiar with the organization called Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep (NILMDTS). Sandy Puc and Cheryl Haggard founded the organization in April 2005 and called it Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep after the children’s bedtime prayer. The Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep Foundation administers a network of approximately 7000 volunteer photographers in the United States and nineteen International countries who provide no-cost bereavement photography services to families suffering the loss of a child. The task of photographing is not an easy one, but it is extremely worthwhile. For many parents, these will be the only professional photographs ever created of their child.

NILMDTS volunteer photographers are asked to be "on-call" a few dates each month. The actual number will depend on how many NILMDTS volunteers are in your service area. Some of these days the phone will remain silent, while others it rings with a call from the hospitals served by NILMDTS. Once a session is photographed, the photographer edits, color-corrects and retouches the images. They are then resized and burned to a CD for the family's personal use. All copyrights are surrendered to the family. Most photographers also prepare a DVD slideshow of the images for the family as well. The expected turnaround on these services is 4 weeks.

We've been given an incredible gift; the ability to earn a living doing something we love. I'm asking you to consider volunteering your services for this very worthwhile organization. Applicant photographers asked to complete a brief online questionnaire.

Once your work is reviewed and accepted, you will be contacted by local coordinators to arrange training.

PLEASE NOTE: Applicants are expected to have a website showing a good working knowledge of technical skills, exposure techniques and auxiliary lighting. Because we often work in hospitals where lighting conditions are less than ideal, you will be asked to display work created with auxiliary lighting equipment. Available-light-only photographers are rarely accepted.

Since the review process can take up to 8 weeks, please be patient.

If you have any questions at all, please go ahead and post them so we can do our best to provide you with answers.

Thanks for considering NILMDTS.

- David Grupa

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