A TOTTON father is one of 100 photographers across the UK who will showcase the faces "behind the mask" of healthcare workers on the frontline.

Photographer and business owner Dave Dodge, from Hounsdown, has been selected to capture six portraits of NHS healthcare workers across the city.

Thousands of healthcare staff continue to tackle the coronavirus pandemic across hospitals, while communities show their gratitude by clapping on their doorsteps at 8pm every Thursday.

The dad-of-two has photographed celebrities including Elizabeth Hurley, Martin Clunes and Hugh Bonneville, while working for Breast Cancer Haven in Titchfield.

Each photographer has to capture six local healthcare workers and some of the images will chosen to go on display in a national exhibition.

The nationwide project is being funded by the National Lottery and the Arts Council, and Dave will capture in time the NHS nurses and doctors in the Southampton area.

Dave, 44, said: “I am honoured to have be one of only 100 professional photographers from across the UK to be selected for this project.

"When I heard about the 2020 Vision Project, I thought that it was a great way of saying thank you to the NHS healthcare workers, that have battled through in difficult times.

"After liasing with the local NHS Trust, we have decided to focus on some of the NHS staff that sometimes get forgotten about during the pandemic such as porters and cleaners. Their roles are just as crucial as the doctors and nurses, but are often overlooked.”

The aim of the project is to capture the person behind the mask to express the human story - not in hospitals or in uniform - to reflect a visual story showing their personality and strength.

Human connection is at the forefront of the work in order to celebrate and validate those who have selflessly cared for our nation throughout the pandemic.

Helen Ives, Chief Organisational Effectiveness and People Officer at Solent NHS Trust said: “Now, more than ever, it’s important for us to recognise NHS colleagues, not just for what they do for us at work, but who they are as people.

"This inspirational and powerful project will enable us to connect with NHS staff on a highly personal level and to appreciate the individual differences that go into making our NHS great.”

The 2020 Vision Project will aim to produce tributes to healthcare staff across the UK, with selected photos to be exhibited in mainstream galleries for public viewing.

To visit Dave's website, go to www.davedodgephotography.co.uk.