In June 2013 the french nonprofit organization the Mimi Foundation collaborated with Leo Burnett France on a very special project. Twenty cancer patients were invited to a studio where they would receive a makeover, but they could not see what was going on during the process. They were unaware that the second they opened their eyes to see their new look, it would be captured by photographer, Vincent Dixon for a book and filmed by director Coban Beutelstetter for a video titled "If Only For A Second" which was released on You Tube on Dec. 5, 2013.
The photographs captured the moment participants discovered their makeovers were not what they were expecting. Instead of a beautiful new look they discovered a unique new look. It also allowed them to forget they had cancer, if only for a second.
"You know what I miss the most? Being carefree," was said by a cancer patient and the statement that inspired the Mimi Foundation to initiate the "If Only For A Second" project.
While the makeovers took place in June, a photo exhibition was organized for the families of the patients to see the photos for the first time in Nov. The Mimi Foundation said "within seconds smiling faces were seen all over the room, at that very moment, cancer did not exist for the family members either."
The book features photographs of the 20 participants with a caption for each photo, and the date and time each person forgot about cancer.
The Mimi Foundation was founded in Belgium in 2004. They primarily provide aid and comfort to those who do not have the resources to challenge cancer with peace. Patients receive free psychological counseling, specific beauty treatments, and a hair adviser.
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