Combat loneliness with these 4 collaborative photography projects 

Nikon film camera
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Lately, I find myself scrolling through pictures from before COVID-19. I miss my friends, in-person meetings and being around people. Accepting the changes in social interaction we’re experiencing through COVID-19 is stressful. While this is a new kind of difficult for me, I’ve found joy in reimagining how I create memories through photos. Here are four ideas that have inspired me while I navigate the loneliness of sheltering in place.

Create your own internet challenge with friends and family

If you were into filming yourself doing the cinnamon challenge, this one’s for you. It might be best to start with something a little less intense, especially if you want your friends and family to join you. Lots of people are experimenting with dance or clothing challenges. TikTok, Twitter and Instagram are filled with short clips of people showing off their skills through a new trend. Focus on what you like doing, be confident and maybe soon you’ll be able to say that you started an internet challenge.

Edit photos of you and your besties on vacation

This one’s for the creative who dreams of sandy beaches, nightclubs or art museums with loved ones. Ask a few people you love to send pictures of themselves at home right now. Then, after snapping a few of yourself, edit them into a new picture. You can do this by removing the background of the images online, through Photoshop, PicCollage or another photo-editing software. Using another editing app, add the transparent images to another picture of your favorite destination. It won’t be perfect unless you’re an expert, but editing pretend vacation photos is a fun activity to fill time and connect with loved ones.

Make a collaborative photography zine with friends

Collaborative zine-making is a great opportunity to experiment creatively with friends. Start simple with a group of people who are interested, and decide on what the topic will be. Then, regroup after a certain amount of time to compile pictures you’ve taken in your daily lives. There are lots of resources available for you to make zines online, but if you’re finding this zine-creation process difficult, start simple with a document or slideshow. Creating a digital photography zine with friends is an exciting creative project to try this summer. 

Start a YouTube channel by creating videos with friends

This one shouldn’t be as much of a challenge as it might sound. Start the same way you would with a collaborative photography project and come up with a topic among a group of friends. Decide on points of interest and any particular vision someone may have. Then, get to filming! When everyone’s captured their ideas, you can make a shared account on a video-editing platform and compile your clips. Your final product will embody the creative energy of each of your friends. Don’t stop there; develop that energy and create new memories by uploading videos on YouTube.

Photography projects like these can create meaningful experiences despite the physical distance that COVID-19 requires. Creativity is healing, so combat the loneliness of sheltering in place with collaborative photography projects.

Contact Sera Smith at [email protected].