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About the work

Centred around three core themes – "Helpers and Heroes," "Your New Normal," and "Acts of Kindness," this book offers a distinctive snapshot of the United Kingdom during the 2020 lockdown, showcasing 100 community photographs.

The proceeds generated from the book's sales will be evenly divided to support the National Portrait Gallery and Mind, the mental health charity (registered 219830).

Initiated under the guidance of The Duchess of Cambridge, who serves as the Patron of the National Portrait Gallery, the Hold Still project emerged as an ambitious endeavour to compile a collective portrait of the UK during the lockdown. Individuals of all ages were encouraged to submit photographic portraits captured within a six-week window in May and June 2020. These portraits revolved around the themes of "Helpers and Heroes," "Your New Normal," and "Acts of Kindness." A panel of judges meticulously evaluated the submissions, focusing on the emotions and experiences conveyed by the images.

This publication features the final selection of 100 images, offering an intimate and deeply personal record of this extraordinary period in the nation's history. The images span the entire spectrum of human experiences, from virtual birthday celebrations and handmade rainbows to the resilience of NHS staff, dedicated key workers, and individuals confronting illness, isolation, and loss. They capture a range of emotions, including humour and grief, creativity and kindness, tragedy and hope, thus reflecting both the shared and individual experiences of the people. Serving as a true portrayal of the UK in 2020, this book includes a foreword by The Duchess of Cambridge, accompanied by the entrants' narratives behind each image. Additionally, it showcases the nationwide outdoor exhibition of Hold Still, further cementing its status as an authentic representation of the nation during a pivotal year.


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Hold Still

Hancock Gallery

Hold Still