At the start of the year I was forced to quarantine for 10 days after a possible contact with the virus. Like seemingly everyone else my age in East London I'd recently taken one step further into becoming a walking stereotype by getting a puppy during lockdown. As anyone that's had any experience of a spritely 4 month old puppy can attest, they do not deal well with being locked inside for long periods of time, so destruction of the house was looking imminent. Thankfully, we seem to have amassed a number of good eggs that we're lucky enough to call friends over the years, and with not much to do at the moment but go for walks, we luckily had no problem finding people to take her for a spin around the park. Around this time I'd also got a brand new 85mm lens specifically for portraits that I was harbouring growing frustration at not really being able to use due to not having anyone to take photos of. This is how the 'Not All Heroes Wear Capes' mini series was born; a doorstep portrait of all the wonderful pals that came to help us out in all their dazzling 85mm glory. Enjoy!
The first two heroes to step up to the plate were Rosie and G, who took phoebes for her first walk without either Lauren or I present. Luckily she likes both of them more than she likes me, so obviously it went swimmingly. I feel G deserves special mention here, as he also went to pick up some worming medicine for Phoebes and some Heineken for me. What a champ. Next up were perhaps Phoebe's biggest fans of the group, Carly and Andy, who I suspect may have been waiting for this moment ever since we got her. Not only did they step up for two walks during the course of the week, they even threw in the added bonus of a chocolate surprise for us, which in the land of time standing still was a lovely 5 minute distraction.
For Phoebe's New Years Eve party she had her great pals Sam and Sara for company, along with her hero Onion, who apparently utterly ignored her for the entire duration of the walk. Good on him I say. She has been trying to pick up sticks at least 4 times her size ever since though, which I can only assume is at least partly down to him.
As New Years Day approached we had begun to resign ourselves to the fact that we wouldn't be able to find anyone for that day, as who wants to deal with an irate puppy with the inevitable end of the year hangover? However once again the kindness of friends suprised us, as Big G actually volunteered for 'the shift no one wants' and even brought along a little helper in the shape of Danny Fisher to make Phoebe feel extra special. Another two champs who took Phoebes for multiple walks over the course of the ten days were Boom and Emily (below). On top of this, they also provided one of my favourite photos of the series thanks to Boom's loving look down at Emily that sets one's heart aflutter just by looking at it.
Last but certainly not least we had the Chomse sisters Maz and Anna who took Phoebes for her last spin around the park without us on day 10. I really love all of these photos, maybe because I appreciate so much the people in them that helped us out in our hour of need, maybe because the 85mm lens is just so pretty or maybe because they all look so darned happy in them! Who knew standing on a freezing cold doorstep waiting for some idiot to take a photo of you so you can take his dog for a walk could generate such joy. Either way, much love to you all and hopefully some day we can return the favour. Here's one more snap of little Rafa, who although she may not have been holding the lead or technically walking Phoebe at all almost definitely helped out in some way. Thanks!