Free Portraits For Family Members of the U.S. Military

While we usually devote this column to discussing trends in camera technology, every so often our industry does something special that’s worth a nod—in this case, a program to provide free portraits to the families of those currently serving in the U.S. military. Dubbed “Portraits of Love,” this project was developed by the PhotoImaging Manufacturers and Distributors Association (PMDA) and will be showcased at the upcoming Big Photo Show in Los Angeles.

Jerry Grossman, Executive Director of PMDA, says portraits were provided last year to more than 1,000 military families thanks to the Family of Love program. Military families are encouraged to contact their local USO office to schedule a portrait session at The Big Photo Show, being held May 4–5 at the LA Convention Center. This inaugural exposition is the first of a series of events targeted at the millions of U.S. photo enthusiasts and produced by PMA, another important photo industry association. Attendees at The Big Photo Show will have an opportunity to visit exhibits from manufactures and distributors, all well as attend instructional sessions and other events.

Hundreds of military families are expected to take advantage of the free portrait sessions manned by volunteer photographers at the Big Photo Show. With assistance from the USO and Shutterfly, the images will be processed and shipped to deployed U.S. servicemen and servicewomen around the globe. In addition, each family will receive a free portrait for themselves.

PMA President Allen Showalter says “We are pleased to welcome Portraits of Love to The Big Photo Show, and honored by the opportunity to help comfort members of the U.S. military with portraits of their loved ones.”