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10,000 Headshots campaign reframes employment opportunities

Staff Report //July 22, 2020//

10,000 Headshots campaign reframes employment opportunities

Staff Report //July 22, 2020//

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As state unemployment rates reached 8.7% in June, Greenville and Columbia photographers are joining in a national effort to help bring unemployment down to pre-pandemic numbers.

Headshot Booker, Brookfield Properties, Upstate Headshots' Alaina Lutkitz and Mary Denman Photography’s titular photographer will offer complimentary headshots today from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. at Upstate Headshots at 111 Cleveland St., Greenville, and the Columbiana Center at 100 Columbiana Circle, Columbia. The initiative is part of a national event called 10,000 Headshots, launched by Headshot Booker co-founder Tony Taafe, according to a news release.

“If you have lost your job due to COVID-19, I encourage you to participate and see just how powerful a professional headshot is,” Lutkitz, owner of Upstate Headshots, said in the release. “According to LinkedIn, people who include headshots in their profiles receive 21 times more views and nine times more “connection” requests.”

Participants will be expected to schedule a timeslot on beforehand and the headshots will be delivered through photo sharing platform SpotMyPhotos, according to the release.

“We are proud and excited to host the 10,000 Headshots initiative across our portfolio,” Michell Snyder, chief marketing officer of Brookfield Properties, said in the release. “As we continue to welcome guests back to our centers, we are grateful for this opportunity to help the members of our communities that have been negatively impacted by the pandemic.”

The baseline price for most high-quality professional headshots starts at $250. The complimentary work of almost 200 photographers across the country adds up to a $2.5 million in value, according to the release.

Taafe pulled from his family’s experience wrestling with unemployment when deciding on what he and his fellow photographers could do to extend a helping hand to those swept up by waves of layoffs this spring and summer.

“I know firsthand that the effects of unemployment extend well beyond an individual,” Taafe said in the release. “My dad was the hardest working person I ever met. He was in construction, so the work wasn’t consistent, and he had almost zero job security. Unemployment impacts everyone and everything associated with that person.”