Former photographer Lisa Burston is spending the year uncovering kindness in Gladstone, documenting one community “angel” per week for all of 2018 on Facebook, Instagram and on her blog: Burst of Life with Lisa
Her first post of the year shines a well-deserved spotlight on Gladstone Angel Babies volunteer seamstress Judith Crabtree.
Working professionally until 2016, Lisa decided to take a break from photography.
“I was so over it for a while I couldn’t even pick up a camera,” Lisa said. She completed a personal Instagram “Project 365” where she took one image a day for an entire year, to regain her love of photography.
“Four days into the new year I was already missing taking those images and creating memories,” she said.
Lisa decided to do a weekly project. She considered various themes and topics until a Facebook friend, passionate about conservation, suggested she photograph “52 Weeks of Rubbish”
“This led me to an idea. I thought to myself: “Why don’t I do fifty-two weeks of finding people that help little bits…..finding people who do stuff that makes other people’s lives just a tiny bit easier and happier,” she said.
“The challenge I have set myself this year is to find these “Angels” and to capture the help they give,” she said.
There are several personal motivations for Lisa in completing the project as well:
“I think it’s going to be highly rewarding,” she said. “I’ve lived here all my life and so I know there’s bits and pieces that people do to help, but you really don’t know until you go looking what people are putting into our community, making it a community,” she said.
“Especially because a lot of the work is gone, a lot of the spirit is gone from the town too. I thought it would lift people’s spirits a little bit as well. They’ll see where other people can help.
She is also keeping notes on the results of her blog-posts – the ripples in the pond that come from spotlighting good works: “At the end of the year, I will print an overview of what we achieved, as a community.”
“Already in the first week with Judy Crabtree and Gladstone Angel Babies, she’s had a donation of a brand-new wedding dress, she’s had postage from Sydney to Gladstone donated by an anonymous person, she’s received a $100 Spotlight voucher,” Lisa said.
“That makes me happy, that my little bit of wording has resulted in people deciding to be generous. There’s a quantifiable gain there, and I feel good about that.”
Lisa is keen to line up as many candidates as she can, so she can allocate a week to each. They can take part anonymously if they wish.
If you know a community angel for the project please contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org