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Studio 444 Angels Custom Photo offering free portrait to seniors graduating from Lee County high schools

May 28, 2020
By MEGHAN BRADBURY (news@breezenewspapers.com) , Cape Coral Daily Breeze

After one photographer heard how much of an impact COVID-19 had on students, she felt compelled to give back to the Lee County graduating seniors by providing them a free 8x10 portrait.

Photographer Kolonda James of Studio 444 Angels Custom Photo said the impact COVID-19 has had on students is horrific. She said although her daughter, who is in high school, is not a senior yet, some of her friends shared the impact distance learning has had and the changes to graduation ceremonies.

"They are happy to graduate and be out of school, but they are very emotionally distressed because they didn't get to walk the stage," she explained. "A lot of parents couldn't pay for their graduation pictures."

James said God has blessed her with opening up a physical location in Cape Coral, allowing her to provide a free cap and gown 8x10 portrait for Lee County graduates from July 13, through Sept. 1.

"It's a free 8x10 to show them we support them," she said.

Those interested in scheduling an appointment to have their photograph taken can visit www.angelscustomphoto.com, under customer service.

"I can only have about five kids at a time and 10 minutes in-between because I have to sanitize," James said. "We will get as many kids as I can. It doesn't matter how long I have to stay there."

The student must have proof he or she is a Lee County graduating senior with either their diploma, or certificate of completion.

"They have to bring in proof that they are a Lee County graduate of 2020," James said.

She said there are no fees and in 7 to 10 days the graduate will either receive a phone call saying their photograph is ready, or it will be mailed to them.

"It means everything, it really does," James said being able to offer this free service for seniors.

It means a great deal, she said, because graduating students are experiencing a stressful time because of how tight money has become. She said some of the kids could not afford the proofs for their photographs, while others now do not know if they can go off to college due to finances.

"Knowing I was able to do something, anything to help these kids ... They need it. I can't stress this enough. I have been working on this for a week and a half," James said.

The photograph, a token she can share, will hopefully provide a forever smile for seniors.

She is asking the community for its help in this endeavor. Such items as donating ink to print the photographs, or rides for seniors to get to the studio, are some of the items she's seeking.

"I'm asking the community to help me, too, any kind of help they can give," James said.

The GoFund Me account is at https://gf.me/u/x47hjy.

Almost two years ago James dived more into the photography profession after she was looking at pictures she took of her nephews and nieces. She said she remembered saying she was tired of taking photographs with her phone.

"I signed up with a company that helps with leads and gets you out there. It kept going from there," James said.

Her favorite photographs are those of newborns, although her photographs include weddings to commercial, among other portraits.

For more information, call 941-877-2841, or email studio444acp@aol.com.

 
 
 

 

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