Lifestyle and portrait photographer Chris McPherson has produced energy-filled, colorful ad campaigns for brands such as Apple, Miller, American Express, Chapstick, Bedsider and Sauza. And he’s shot fun, poppy editorial spreads for magazines like Variety, The Hollywood Reporter, Entertainment Weekly and ESPN. It’s obvious through looking at his images that he loves what he does and appreciates the ability to do what he wants to do. So when his friend Jon Rose, founder of Waves for Water, asked if he’d be interested in going to Haiti, he was all in.
Waves had been in Port au Prince immediately following the devastating earthquake of 2010. “It’s hard to put in words how destitute the people were that we came across,” McPherson told PDN via email. “Living with absolutely no infrastructure, everything in ruins…yet extremely warm and welcoming with a strong sense of hope. This is what I focused on when doing portraits of people.”
In September of 2010, McPherson photographed local Haitians in his bright, colorful way for Waves’ (in partnership with Nike) at-the-time pilot program called the Game Changer Bucket. Each bucket contained everything needed to filter dirty water into clean drinking water, as well as a soccer ball, air pump and cones. “Nothing made these people happier than to have clean water and an actual ball so they could play their favorite sport.” McPherson has not been back to Haiti.
McPherson won PDN‘s 2013 World in Focus travel photography contest for the one of the images he made in Haiti [slide 3]. The deadline for PDN‘s 2014 World in Focus travel photography is October 2, 2014. Visit the website for more information.