“Covid-19 came. Life changed. Probably irrevocably. I was numb; but I couldn’t stand around helpless. I decided to document the new daily existence of millions. I advertised my idea on social media and through my local newsletter in West London. The response was enormous. We made contact by phone and email, arranged details of location, clothing, face masks and physical distancing, and then set a date and time.
I photographed people at home in self-isolation during the twilight. Imprisoned in their homes, they gaze forlornly out of their window onto a different, desolate world outside. I also asked them a few informal questions about how they were coping.
For the first time in a long time the whole world suddenly slowed down. Many were forced to take a break from work and people had much more time to reflect. The pandemic has resulted in significant global social and economic disruption, including the largest recession since the great depression. It’s had a profound impact on all our lives, forcing us to stay indoors and reducing our contact with friends and family.
But probably the most important aspect of this project, for me, is that it provides a magnifying glass for us to reflect upon what the pandemic and lockdown meant to us individually. The loved ones we lost, the extended isolation from our families and the huge sacrifices that many have made.
I wanted to record this surreal time in our lives, to capture it for posterity, holding onto the memories of what we have been through so we can reflect back at some point in our lives on what happened all around the world.
Now I plan to self-publish a coffee-table book of the images and the sitters’ stories. I hope that this volume will provide, for years to come, an insight into what life was like in lockdown, not only in London, but also for millions around the world.”
Julia has launched a crowdfunding campaign to raise funds for the new book. To support the project, visit kickstarter.com