For the first time since the foundation of Melbourne, and since the last pandemic, will we see the building and rebuilding of the small business sector in Melbourne city. I want to photograph – visually document – this process. This project is the opposite to David H Wells documentary project, Foreclosed Dreams: Foreclosures Across America (2008 to present). In contrast, Resurrecting Dreams will be the visual story of how small business begin, build, and succeed; a positivistic view.
Since Melbourne’s foundation in 1835 to February 2020, businesses have built the city into a vibrant, confident, and wonderful place. Melbourne was home to many amazing cafes, vibrant nightlife, unique fashion stores, fantastic bars, and brilliant sport life and allied health businesses. The coronavirus (COVID-19 or SARS CoV2) was persistent and dangerous, which necessitated citywide lockdowns, social isolation, and physical distancing to protect the vulnerable and reduce virus transmission. Consequently, a lot of the small business sector in the CBD was decimated in the eight months of these lockdowns in Melbourne. In November 2020, we achieved zero community transmissions, but at great expense economically, societally, personally, psychologically. As of January 2021, there are a myriad of vacant and available street level business spaces – and opportunities.
I have photographed small businesses in Japan doing their thing. Since I’ve moved back to Australia in 2019, I myself have to rebuild my own photographic business, and I’m learning how to do that for this city. I’m curious about how new small business owners plan, create, build, trade, struggle, and succeed. I want to show the resurrection of the dreams of small business owners and help celebrate their wins. Their wins are the real “trickle down” in the city economy. Their success means employment of many of the city’s people.
How you can help; contact me if…
- You’re opening your own business. Let me photograph that process (even if you’re still in the looking-at-real estate options stage)
- You know someone starting their own business
- You’re a real estate agent for landlord: let me in to photograph the empty space
- You want to help fund this project
- You what to help exhibit this project (funding or other support needed)
- You want to see it published in your outlet (funding needed)
- You want to use the photos to tell the story for your brand (funding needed)