This week, Adobe highlighted several photographers who have risen above the challenges of the Covid-19 pandemic, to create work that “pushed their professional and personal goals to new heights.”

Be sure to tune in to our Pixel Punisher webinar on March 24, 2021, where Frederick Van Johnson sits down with Curt Saunders, one of the photographers featured by Adobe, to discuss his journey.

Becoming her own boss: Erin Ng

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Adobe Lightroom Rising Star Erin Ng had to adapt with restaurants and at home, with truncated shot lists, extra cooking and lighting time, no assistants and extra cleaning. Erin had clients ship product to her whenever possible, and started shooting in her makeshift home studio.

She told Adobe that shooting independently forced her to hone her food and prop styling skills, as well as practice conceptualizing and producing projects from beginning to end. She also spent time learning strategic photography marketing skills, and recommends that photographers “diversify your skill set and revenue streams so that you’re always equipped to pivot when one thing dries up.”

Returning to his roots: George Turner

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Wildlife photographer George Turner relied on travel, but when that was no longer possible, he “saw an entire year’s worth of work disappear in a week.”

Due to not being able to travel, he turned to past projects to find inspiration. “While travel and work wasn’t impossible in a real-world sense, transporting myself to past assignments gave me real hope, plus reminded me what was waiting (and still is!) once this passes.”

He was able to rediscover his passion for telling important stories, and found that the last year created “a double-down effect” in his purpose as a creator.

Focusing on self-care: Alexis Hunley

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LA-based photographer and Adobe Creative Residency Community Fund recipient Alexis Hunley shared how she was limited in her ability to safely shoot in-studio.

“I simply don’t have access to the resources needed to meet COVID safety standards…I’ve had to find ways to reduce the risk of contracting or spreading COVID-19 within my household when I am not working that has changed my creative workflow.”

In response to this challenge, Alexis focused on self-care and her physical and mental wellbeing in order to continue working. “I cannot stress this enough — when I don’t take care of my body physically, mentally, and spiritually, I cannot function, let alone create,” she said.

Finding peace of mind: Curt Saunders

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Curt Saunders, a Lightroom Rising Star, “expected to do no shooting at all for the rest of 2020 because uncertainty of what things would look like in the midst of all these unprecedented circumstances, especially as a freelancer.”

As Covid-19 cases in New York started to decline, Curt was able to do some outdoor, socially distanced work. He focused on making intentional work more than ever, asking himself, “If something unpredictable happens, and I’m unable to create for some time — do I have work I can stand on?”

Finding harmony in the personal and professional: Christina Poku

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UK-based Christina Poku, an Adobe Creative Resident, faced challenges with accessing props and collaborators for shooting still life. She was forced to pivot one of her Creative Residency side projects to focus more on what was happening around her.

Titled “Observations,” the project explores thoughts, overlooked moments and objects of the everyday.

“It’s been a great way to get inspiration from what’s already around me and has helped me process and navigate daily life over the last year,” she said.

Exploring his own backyard: John Wu

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With plans to travel across Asia put on hold, Lightroom Rising Star John Wu stayed close to home, exploring his own backyard. He took his refunded travel expenses and invested into new gear, and started exploring Los Angeles with a new perspective.

“You’re always in a state of sensory overload when you’re traveling abroad or even to a new city. Seeing new things is exciting but it can be the opposite when you’re back in your daily routine at home,” he said.