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Life on Pause (Part 3)
A personal project documenting life in quarantine. The new normal.

Kevin Steele by Kevin Steele on July 13, 2020

The world has shifted to a new normal. Each day brings difficult news of the seriousness ahead. These are unprecedented times. You may know me as a commercial advertising photographer, life full of color and emotion. This brings me back to my roots documenting life. These days bring us together no matter how we are physically apart. Shot with one camera & one lens, photographs are being added daily. I am being extremely safe: mask, gloves, Clorox wipes and distance. Shooting from outside in.

Shot through the front door, being safe, into the space of self-isolation revealing life apart and together.

This is Alexandria.

“I go from feelings of anxiousness to feelings of gratitude. Yoga and dance helps. The more I’m on social media, other feelings start. What helps me through the mixed emotions to get to a good place of hope and productivity and peace and healing has been getting to the yoga mat. Breathing, healing, moving, dancing. That’s what gets me out of my dark and hopeless feelings: time with God in prayer and meditation. The fear gets pushed out as long as I’ve made it to the mat at least once a day."

This is Benjo and Samantha.

“So far life on pause is not a bad thing, we are learning more and more how to embrace it and to adapt. After 37 days I started to become antsy and now we're both starting to think creatively of how we can create new content and solutions for clients and how we can proceed after the virus is over. We are all the time thinking about others that have been very affected by it, or sick from it, or experienced death. We’re always thinking of how we can help."

This is Sheri and her son.

“Our world abruptly stopped. There’s a ton of fears and unknowns, my business and industry have been decimated so that weighs heavy. It’s been an interesting journey and the fact that we’ve been able to slow down and spend time has been a welcome gift. We’re very fortunate to live here, I wish we could go to the beach and walk on the Strand but it’s closed – the beaches are closed, the parks are closed. We walk the neighborhood to get out of our small space and really notice so much more now and how everyone says hello. I hope we hold onto that kindness and community."

This is Cindy.

“On the one hand, I feel incredibly productive, and there’s also this sense of the unknown, a sense of not knowing how the world is going to look like now. For someone like me who hasn't traveled a lot…that’s what I wanted to do this whole year! And now, I’m not sure… I lost my mother six months ago and there’s a feeling of grief over her death that maybe I wouldn’t be feeling if I was just running around doing my life. I wish I could just call her and ask her ‘what do you think about this whole thing?’ It makes me sad that she’s not here to share this with me and on the other hand I’m glad she’s not because I don’t think she would be able to handle it. And it makes me sad that my brother and nephews are a half hour away and I can’t even be with them, you know? I just wish I could give them a big hug right now…”

This is Jessica, Chris and their family.

"I’m concerned about the kids and their school and being behind. We’re doing homeschooling and hopefully that’ll be Ok. It’s my first time homeschooling.” “It’s a good opportunity to re-connect with the family, on the other hand there’s a feeling of isolation from friends and loved ones that don’t live in your house.”

This is Jack and Heather.

"There’s something about this isolation that’s different.

“This is giving us time to reflect and heal and reset ourselves. Before this, life was crazy for us- moving all over the place. We just got married in September and it’s just been a wild journey these past 3 years. We’ve been loving being with our dogs all day! And they’ve been digging it too. Our nightly routine is a walk through the neighborhood followed by treats at the house. But we’re definitely eager to regroup and see our friends. It’ll be good to get back to some normalcy after all this – we're ready."

This is Nerida and Graeme.

“I have the time to focus on the things that I love doing that I always feel stressed that I’m not doing. But I’m also fearful and nervous. I’m worried about my parents who are in a country that isn’t up to where we are with quarantine and that scares me. I try to think of other people and relate to what they’re doing right now. Like: Broadway is closed! Can you believe that! And I think of people in 3rd world countries. We are lucky. I’m trying to keep in touch with the outside world and keep compassion for everyone. Humanity always finds a way to keep connected.”

This is Juan and Andrea.

“We’re appreciating this space of ours and what it takes to make it work. The home has been our new temple, possessions are not so important but the freedom to enjoy what we have has been tremendous. These little plants around all become so important, they’re what we have every day in front of us. We’re figuring out how to balance time and grow together even further. Getting to meet and know the neighbors has been a challenge as we can’t see other much but we’re taking the opportunity to connect more with the community. It’s encouraging to see a lot of people sharing happiness in the neighborhood and walking."

This is Shleigh and Marco.

Two exes that moved back in together during the pandemic.

Shleigh: “What can I do? This has forced me to get extra creative and resourceful. It feels good to be able to something that’s helping other peoples lives. I have a desire to do something. Just the smallest things I find I’m grateful for. You know when you are without something super simple like lentils you are grateful for finding it at the store.” And Marco: "At the beginning this was an emergency but now I find myself saving a lot of time, I sleep better, I eat better, I’m more relaxed. I think it will be really hard for me to go back to the normal type of work schedule I had. I’m finding myself in awe of so many things I never had the time to do before."

This is Catherine.

"I’ve been in quarantine for over 3 months. I’m one of those at higher risk with a weakened immune system so I’m being cautious. It’s definitely been an interesting time. Some days are brighter than others. A lot of time for insight and soul searching. I do love life at a slower pace. We'll be forever changed by this...It’s been fascinating living through history in the making.”

If you're in LA and wish to participate in the Life on Pause project, let me know.

★ Follow the Life on Pause project on Instagram ★

©2020 Kevin Steele. All rights reserved.

More About Kevin Steele

Kevin SteeleIt's all about feeling: Creating an emotional connection in images that range from quiet and still to explosively dynamic. Kevin love's shooting people with a zest for life – working fast and light or crewing up as needed for both stills and motion production with a great team. Every assignment is an opportunity to create something extraordinary....and have a lot of fun. Authentic, emotional, time-slowing, cinematic imagery is how Kevin sees the world for recent clients ranging from American Express, Four Seasons, Delta Airlines, and Norwegian Cruise Lines to travel/tourism and healthcare campaigns.

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