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One Lens: Sharing Our Common Views

What is One Lens?

One Lens Logo
One Lens: Sharing Our Common Views is a statewide virtual photo and storytelling exhibit organized by the First Lady’s Office in partnership with the PA Council on the Arts, PA Historical and Museum Commission, the PA Tourism Office, and the Library of Accessible Materials for Pennsylvanians. It celebrates the hard work and commitment of all Pennsylvanians as we continue our fight against COVID-19.

For nearly a year, Pennsylvanians have been fighting against the virus. We have been working hard to stop the spread, united in our common effort to keep our loved ones and communities safe. Our sacrifice has been great, but our determination, grit, and love have been greater. The One Lens exhibit aims to capture Pennsylvanian’s legendary can-do spirit in action. Honoring our individual lived experiences by creating a visual record of our shared history during this most difficult time.

The exhibit covers three themes:

  • Our Heroes, paying homage to the pandemic heroes who cannot simply stay home;
  • Our Lives, looking at how we spend our time when no one is watching; and
  • Our Communities, showcasing Pennsylvanians uniting in the face of a global health crisis.

This is an extraordinary moment. Please join us in creating an exhibit that is truly by and for the people of Pennsylvania.

For exhibit updates, highlights, and inspiration, follow One Lens on Facebook and Instagram.

How to Participate

Submissions are now open. Hyperlink to submission form.

Photo submissions are open now through March 8, 2021. Please click here to submit your photos.

Audio image submissions are open now through March 15, 2021.

Please call the Library for Accessible Media for Pennsylvanians at 215-683-3218 to leave your message.

Every Pennsylvanian is encouraged to share their experience during the pandemic. No photography experience is necessary. Please review the rules before submission.


This is not a competition and by submitting content you agree to the rules. There is no cost to participate and participants may submit a maximum of three photographs or audio images for consideration.

Submitted photographs must have been taken between March 2020 and present-day. All submissions should fit one of the following themes:

  • Our Heroes, paying homage to the pandemic heroes who could not simply stay home.
  • Our Lives, a look at how Pennsylvanians spent their time when no one was watching.
  • Our Communities, a showcase of Pennsylvanians coming together during an unprecedented time.

The window to submit a photograph(s) begins on February 8, 2021 and will close on March 8, 2021.

The window to submit an audio image(s) begins on February 17, 2021 and will close on March 15, 2021.

Photographs and stories may begin to be shared on Commonwealth of Pennsylvania social media following February 8 with the virtual exhibition opening on March 19, 2021.

By submitting a photo, you retain ownership of, and all rights to, the photo. However, you also grant the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, and those authorized by the Commonwealth, a royalty-free, worldwide, perpetual, non-exclusive license to publish, distribute, alter, sell or otherwise make use of the photo for any purpose without requiring the payment of any compensation or consideration to, or the receipt of approval, from any individual.

Submission Eligibility and Requirements:

  • Must be a current resident of Pennsylvania.
  • Must be 18 years of age or older
  • Content must have been captured during the COVID-19 pandemic (March 2020 through present).
  • For photos, digital file resolution must be at least 300 dpi, or 1600×1200 pixels. Images should be no smaller than 1 mb and no larger than 5 MB. Images should be a JPEG or PNG files.
  • Submissions must include contact information (name, phone number, and/or email address, and county), and photos require a brief caption with entry.
  • By submitting a photograph, you confirm that each person depicted in the photograph has granted permission to be portrayed as shown. However, any photos depicting individuals under 18 years of age must be accompanied by express written permission from the parent/guardian in order to be considered for inclusion in the exhibit.
  • Submissions must not contain:
    • Profane/vulgar language
    • Nudity/sexual content
    • Illegal activity
    • Name-calling, threats, defamatory statements, or personal attacks towards an individual
    • Hate speech targeting an individual’s race, color, religious creed, ancestry, age, gender, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, AIDS or HIV status, or disability
    • Commercial content promoting or soliciting service or products
    • Promote political organizations
    • Information that could reasonably compromise public safety
    • Other content that the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania deems inappropriate
    • Submissions are not guaranteed to be featured and will be reviewed by the
      First Lady’s Office and the Pennsylvania Tourism Office.

Your submission of content is voluntary, and you assume full responsibility for any and all liability related to your participation in the exhibition, which is expressly subject to sovereign immunity by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

The Commonwealth of Pennsylvania assumes no responsibility for any incorrect, inaccurate or incomplete information, whether caused by website users or by any of the equipment or programming associated with the virtual exhibit.

Meet Our Regional Ambassadors

One Lens has five regional ambassadors selected by the First Lady’s Office and the Pennsylvania Tourism Office.

Each ambassador represents a region of the state (central, northeast, northwest, southeast, and southwest). Their strong connection to their regions ensures that the One Lens exhibit will truly reflect the experiences of Pennsylvania’s diverse, vibrant, and resilient communities.

Shannon Maldonado, Southeast

Shannon Maldonado

Shannon Maldonado is the founder and Creative Director of YOWIE, a creative platform and design studio founded in 2016.

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    After over a decade working in Fashion, she created the storefront and design studio to showcase emerging artists and create spaces that evoke emotion and discovery. In late 2021, YOWIE is evolving into a multi-floor platform for creativity, bringing hospitality, design, retail, and community engagement into one interconnected space. The new concept will be a place to stay, shop, create, and collaborate with YOWIE.

    Shannon sits on the board of directors at Fleisher Art Memorial and seeks to build an intersection between art and community. Past collaborators include The Philadelphia Museum of Art, CB2, Fleisher Art Memorial, Ubiq, ICA Philadelphia, The Wing, Ethel’s Club, and The Deacon.

Porcha Johnson, Central

Porcha has six years of experience in health advocacy, motivating women to live healthier lifestyles and 13 years of experience as a TV news reporter and anchor.

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    Her strong background in television news helped her connect with women and girls all around the country through Black Girl Health (BGH), a company she founded in 2014. Her motivation for BGH stemmed from her personal experience with fibroids, and the lack of awareness among women of color about the impact diet and exercise has on reproductive health.

    BGH has extended its reach through its parent company BGH & Associates (BGHA) which services government, agencies, corporations, and organizations with advertising, marketing, video production, live streaming, and health support staff.

    In 2019, Porcha expanded the brand by starting the Black Girl Health Foundation, a non-profit 501c3 organization that creates pathways to educate, engage, and empower women and girls to reduce health disparities and improve health literacy. The foundation creates virtual and in-person workshops to promote health awareness about issues that include but not limited to, COVID-19, mental health, breast cancer, and more.

Ceasar Westbrook, Northwest

During his study of fine art at Indiana University of Pennsylvania, Ceasar’s focus was woodworking and furniture design.

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    He transitioned into painting after he graduated. Currently, he does commission work for various collectors throughout the country, some of which are well-known celebrities and musicians, and his most recent paintings include pieces for city council and a district judge back in his hometown of Lancaster Pennsylvania.

    “My number one mission is to influence and inspire others to maximize their potential in whatever it is they’re passionate about. Through my work, I want people to relate and see themselves in the images I create,” says Ceasar Westbrook, a Pennsylvania-based artist, likes to focus on semi-realistic and abstract paintings that tie into daily social and political issues. Mainly using oil and acrylic mediums, his use of vibrant colors is the focal point in many of his pieces.

    Ceasar’s experience also includes seven solo exhibition shows at major businesses and universities, uniform designs for the Erie Bayhawks of the NBA G-League (2019), a 1200 sq. ft. Mural at Dobbins Landing (Erie), a 1300 sq. Ft. Mural at Manus Sunoco gas station (Erie), and recognition as Celebrate Erie’s Chalk Walk Champion (2019).

James Hamill, Northeast

James Hamill is the Director of Public Relations for the Pocono Mountains Visitors Bureau, the destination marketing organization for Wayne, Pike, Monroe, and Carbon counties.

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    Hamill helps create content for the various platforms at the PMVB including social media, television, and the web.

    He was a reporter and anchor at WNEP-TV, the ABC affiliate in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre prior to joining the Poconos team. He has a degree in Broadcast Journalism from the S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University and now resides in his hometown of Honesdale with his wife and two children.

    Follow @PoconoTourism for more from the Pocono Mountains.

Matthew Galluzzo, Southwest

Matthew Galluzzo has dedicated his entire career to Pittsburgh and its neighborhoods.

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    In September 2019 he joined Riverlife as president and CEO, and leads a transformative agenda for creating, activating, and celebrating Pittsburgh’s riverfronts. Prior to Riverlife, Matthew served for 9 years as executive director of Lawrenceville Corporation. In addition to facilitating over $200 million in public and private investment in the neighborhood, Galluzzo oversaw the creation and implementation of the first community land trust in Western Pennsylvania. Matt has recently served on several boards, including the Radiant Hall Board of Directors (Chair), the URA’s New Market Tax Credit Advisory Board, and the Owen Galluzzo Memorial Fund. He has previously been an adjunct faculty member for the University of Pittsburgh’s Graduate School for Community Organization and Social Administration, where he also earned a Masters of Social Work degree. Matt also holds a Bachelor’s degree from Thomas More College.

Why We Started One Lens

One Lens: Sharing Our Common Views is the brainchild of Pennsylvania First Lady Frances Wolf. As she witnessed the effects of COVID-19 – and Pennsylvanians’ inspiring response to the crisis – she began imagining ways to create a deeper sense of community, even as we stay physically apart.

First Lady Wolf realized that now more than ever, Pennsylvanians were looking for an opportunity to see our similarities, common goals, and build stronger bonds between our neighbors and communities. And so, the idea for a virtual photo exhibit was born.

The Bigger Picture

Hosted by Pennsylvania First Lady Frances Wolf, The Bigger Picture is a series of virtual conversations that take a deeper look into our pandemic life, helping to forge connections, celebrate our resilience, and honor our experiences.

Archiving Our Pandemic Experience | February 4, 2021
Historians, librarians, and archivists discuss the 1918 Influenza Pandemic’s effect on Pennsylvania, the connections we can draw to our COVID-19 experiences, and the important role we each can play in creating the history books of tomorrow.
Watch Pennsylvania in the 1918 Influenza Pandemic by Pennsylvania State Archivist Tyler Stump to learn more.

Healing Through Art | February 11, 2021
Researchers, creatives, and art therapists from across Pennsylvania discuss the role that art can play in building and healing communities, and in achieving mental health and wellness. The Pennsylvania Arts Council offers resources to support members of the arts community as they work to stay safe amidst the COVID-19 pandemic.

Coping with COVID-19 | February 18, 2021
Mental health experts and advocates discuss how trauma affects people; the ways racial, gender, economic, and other inequalities factor into and compound the issue of trauma; and mental health supports and services that exist. If you or a loved one are struggling or are in need of mental health assistance, you are not alone. Please visit our Mental Health Resource Guide a comprehensive list of resources.

The Resiliency of Small Businesses | February 24, 2021
Small business owners share the innovative ways they have kept their employees and communities safe during COVID-19, while economic development experts highlight resources that exist. Please visit Business Unites Against COVID-19 to certify your restaurant as COVID compliant, find trainings and webinars, get PPE for workers, learn more about the COVID-19 vaccines, keep your employees and customers safe, and download additional resources.

Tourism and the Great Outdoors | March 4 at 12pm
Tourism professionals and environmental advocates and experts talk about how our outdoor spaces have become more important than ever as we’ve looked for ways to stay active and safely enjoy our communities. Head to VisitPA for more information about the outdoor adventures Pennsylvania has to offer.

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