PMDA Launches Extended 2015 Portraits of Love Program

PMDA Launches Extended 2015 Portraits of Love Program

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Woodbury, NY—In November, the PhotoImaging Manufacturers and Distributors Association (PMDA) launched its seventh annual Portraits of Love project, focused on providing even more families with free family portraits for their loved ones in the military—whether they are deployed overseas or serving here at home.

A joint effort between PMDA, the USO military support organization, and Shutterfly, it is the goal of the Portraits of Love program to provide professional photographers with an opportunity to use their talents to show their appreciation for those serving our country while at the same time saying thank you to the brave men and women who defend our country.

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In November, PMDA launched its seventh annual Portraits of Love project, which will be extended this year beyond the holiday season. Pictured is volunteer photographer Rick Gerrity taking a portrait of a military family at Fort Drum. © John Bentham

“In Portrait of Love’s seventh year, it is again PMDA’s great honor to support our military personnel through this worthy and altruistic program—a truly meaningful way for the photo-imaging industry and professional photography community to give back to U.S. military personnel and their families, who have sacrificed so much for our country,” said Jerry Grossman, executive director of the PMDA and one of the program’s founders.

New for this year is the extension of the Portraits of Love program beyond the holiday season. “We found there are other times of the year when family is celebrated, such as Mother’s and Father’s Day,” said Michelle Tramantano, PMDA program director. “So this year we are extending the program through June, to enable USO bases to offer families a chance to take advantage of this program for a longer a period of time.”

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Portraits of Love volunteer photographer Rick Gerrity shows a participating family the free portrait that will be sent to their loved one in the military. The portrait session was held at Fort Drum, New York, in November. © John Bentham

Participants receive their photos in an e-mail via Shutterfly Share. They are able to redeem two free 5×7-inch prints with free shipping on their order using unique codes provided to them during their photo shoot. Families can find participating USO bases at pmdaportraitsoflove.com.

The program has continued to grow every year since its inception. In the first year of the program, only Fort Hood (Texas) and Fort Lewis (Washington) participated. But as word of the program grew, and the relationship with the USO was formed, the program has extended to more than 20 bases for 2015, and more anticipated for 2016.

Portraits of Love

The Portraits of Love program was originally conceived by PMDA in partnership with the Soldiers’ Angels volunteer organization; it was then known as PMDA Soldiers’ Angels Portraits of Love. The goal of the project was to provide 10,000 U.S. soldiers around the globe with portraits of family and loved ones for the holiday season, taken by incredibly talented photographers. It has since grown beyond that scope in cooperation with the USO.

Sponsors of the 2015/2016 Portraits of Love project include Shutterfly, Canon, Fujifilm, Nikon, Sony, Panasonic, Samsung, Ricoh Imaging, Sigma, Digital Photo Academy, Tamron, Eyefi, and Digital Imaging Reporter. pmda.com

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