Horia Monalache is a photograher based in San Francisco, who’s aim always was to create an impact through photography and change people’s lives.
Coming from a place with the highest number of homeless people, he felt that the stereotype of homelessness is highly misinterpreted.
Trying to show another perspective on this matter, Monalache created a project where he tried to ‘give ‘ these homeless people the career they always dreamed of through his camera lenses.
His project called The Prince and the Pauper shows the image of the homeless people how they were in the beginning on the left and how they transformed to their dream job on the right.
Each one of them wears a recognizable outfit associated with the career of his or her dream, looking up proudly as if towards a brighter future.
To finalize this project, Manolache created a studio in a hotel room, with a black background to create a film inspired aesthetics. This way he hopes to show the exact emotion and face expression of each individual, without any distraction of the environment.
Most of the costumes, Manolache bought and rented through eBay and Amazon, and his wife helped with the hair and makeup.
However, this isn’t only make-believe: he helped bring the models a true step closer to their ideal futures, by offering resources like food, money, and clothing, or even guiding people towards safe places to sleep.
“I have been a photographer for a while and my big question was for many years how I can help somebody with a photograph…After a while I understood that photography, as writing, can change mentalities and can solve problems,” -he explains.
Manolache has launched a crowdfunding campaign to fund the creation of a book of the photographs, which he hopes will further help to change the cultural conversation around homelessness.
All images via Horia Manolache.