Humans of Beehive / by Francesco Solfrini

'Humans of Beehive' Photo Shoot

The people

Beehive Industries is a Not-For-Profit Social Enterprise beating the isolation faced by seniors and marginalised Sydney-siders. Working in the packaging assembly and mail house service operations, the 'Beehivers' find a social purpose and opportunities to connect with others.

The story to tell

Beehive Industries needed to communicate that their workers are not only capable of doing the job, but have a compelling story to tell, too. Often, this story can be read in their eyes and wrinkles and can be the trigger, the extra reason, for Beehive Industries' clients to choose them over another company. My task was to capture the essence of the 'Beehivers' and bring the human side of their stories to the surface. My shots will accompany written stories inspired by the 'Humans of New York' series. This will be part of a social campaign which goal will be to raise awareness around their cause and bring more clients which eventually helps this social enterprise supporting disadvantaged Australians.

My approach

My challenge was to shoot in very low light conditions with no control over the background and the framing. To overcome that I chose a 85mm prime lens, a fast lens for greater luminosity, ideal for portraits. I opted for a deep dept of field and tightly framed the subjects in order to draw the attention on their faces and features. When shooting, I let them be. If they wanted to smile because they felt like it, I captured that; otherwise I let them express spontaneously their mood or personality. The dignity and dept of their eyes really came through and I hope it's what the viewers of these shots will connect with. 

View the full portrait gallery here: