Today my friend Nicole and I walked around Ann Arbor and stopped at the Cupcake Station. It is a charming locally owned shop that sells hundreds of fresh cupcakes. We started talking about how locally owned businesses truly define Ann Arbor.
There is truly no town quite like Ann Arbor. People attend University of Michigan because of one factor: the town of Ann Arbor. What makes Ann Arbor so special? The small local shops and restaurants that give the town such appeal.
I was thinking about how this great town could motivate me to create a project. I would love to research and get to know the small business owners who help make the town so special. I would love to interview, photograph, audio record, and design a website or book that highlights these individual owners that have been around for years in this town. Because of the current state of the economy, these businesses are vulnerable. In addition, it is less likely more small businesses will open in the future. I would love to highlight the importance of small businesses in this town and create a cause that embraces small shops to open so that Ann Arbor can not only keep its character, but enhance its charm.
While I was studying abroad in Italy, I would often photograph the shop owners. Here is a photo I took while in Sorrento, Italy.