The Charlottesville downtown mall is a prime location for picture taking, and one man is turning that picture hot spot into his own photography project.
It's called the Cville People Project. Keith Sprouse is snapping pictures of people on the mall and telling their stories to the community through a blog.
Spotted: a woman walking down the mall in a winter hat stacked high with fur. Lisa Banton is exactly what Sprouse looks for when he's snapping pictures for the blog: interesting and story-worthy.
"Sometimes I just go up to people that I don't know, maybe they're doing something interesting or you know they're wearing a funky hat," Sprouse said.
All it takes is a quick picture and a few minutes of chatting for Sprouse to learn Banton is an aspiring children's clothes designer.
Sprouse says the idea for the blog all started when he went to a photography workshop. Now, he picks exterior brick and siding on buildings on the mall to use as his own personal photography studio.
Dotty Cappellino became part of the blog when Sprouse came into her cupcake shop on the mall. She says it was fun to tell her story because it brought back old memories.
"He was asking us so many questions that it just kind of brought us back home and you know it was a really good feeling," Cappellino said.
Sprouse says the pictures are fun for people to look at but it's the story that completes each picture.
"If you have a few minutes and an open mind then pretty much anyone you talk to will have something they can teach you," Sprouse said.
He says initially walking up to strangers is daunting but by the end of the chat most people agree to take part in the project.
"I always get comments on my hat and I was like 'oh it's the hat' and I know it, so then I was a little nervous but you know it was okay, it was pretty cool actually," Banton said.
Sprouse says he hopes someday he will have enough photographs to put together an art show.
If you want to check out the Cville People Project blog, click here.
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