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Belstaff team up with Big Issue vendors for photoshoot

The vendors were even snapped by fellow Big Issue seller, Carlos Gonzalez Perez, a self-taught photographer

Big Issue vendors have taken part in a photoshoot with a difference, working with fashion brand Belstaff to raise money for magazine sellers across the country

In this week’s magazine, vendors William, Roel and Sharon, who sell the Big Issue in London, all modelled brand new jackets. 

Belstaff is donating 10 per cent of all full-price sales over Black Friday weekend to The Big Issue Foundation, the magazine’s charity arm, having already supplied hundreds of warm jackets to vendors this spring.

The vendors were even photographed by a fellow Big Issue seller, Carlos Gonzalez Perez. He has sold the magazine on and off for a decade and is also a self-taught photographer. 

Perez’s work has been exhibited around the world, documenting city life, exploring architecture, and focusing on unusual suspects. 

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“The three vendors were honestly like models,” he said.

“They were so charming, so natural. They made it extremely easy. One or two were a bit shy, but they were so easy to work with.”

Perez said sometimes people don’t know what to expect when they find out it will be a Big Issue vendor at the camera. 

He added: “I think maybe I broke a stereotype about Big Issue vendors. Some people were quite surprised to hear about how many exhibitions I’ve had, how much I’ve travelled for my work.

“I don’t know if they were shocked by the quality of the photographs but maybe they were by how seriously I take the work and how professional I am.”

Perez scouted out the locations before the shoot, opting for classic London architecture, autumnal colours and trains. 

These locations all represent the journey a Big Issue vendor can take, Perez added. 

Tracy Griffin, Big Issue Foundation interim CEO, said: “As we enter the depths of winter, we are reminded of everyone’s need to stay warm. 

“That’s why we are so grateful to Belstaff for providing 350 jackets to Big Issue vendors across the UK through their buy-one-give-one spring promotion. 

“We are also so pleased that we will be receiving 10 per cent of every sale made from November 27 to 30, which will help provide much-needed support with health, housing and finance for vendors at this critical time.”

Read more in this week’s Big Issue, available through our online shop and from your local vendor now

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