Lockdown portraits in film and photography / 🥉 CB Award

Brussels looks desolate. Deserted, but not defeated. Meanwhile, behind numerous imposing facades, the people of Brussels are trying to deal creatively with the social constraints of quarantine. As difficult as the city is, its inhabitants are more connected than ever. That’s why Telenet and TBWA – together with photographer Jef Boes – captured a series of online portraits of Brussels residents via webcam. The beauty of man in difficult times.


Because of these corona times, Jef Boes was already experimenting with Facetime and Skype. Telenet saw in him the suitable photographer to capture the Brussels connectedness. “This situation has something curious for me,” he says. “Miraculously, during the portraits, I felt a lot of solidarity among the Brussels people, whereas in normal circumstances you notice it less. I wanted to share that feeling, in the hope that it will make people feel less lonely.”

The lockdown portraits are also quite unique in terms of production. Casting, PPM, shoot and post production all happened from home. Together with Initials LA, TBWA went in search of six real Brussels stories. Each one authentic and reflective of society in quarantine. “The portraits are done via videocall,” Jef Boes continues. “I always went together with my interviewer to find a nice light and a good place in the house. Often I would take a picture when the sun was rising or setting. As a photographer, I am also trained to look at lines, and place people in them. It’s about passing on good guidelines to my models. The shoot happened very spontaneously. I let them be themselves as much as possible. The first portrait I took was of Fred Jannin. A very special man. I immediately felt a click.”

In addition to comedian Fred Jannin, the owners, Nathalie and Jean-Louis Hennart, of the iconic bar L’Archiduc were also portrayed. They are given an encouraging place on an immense poster right across from their business in Dansaert. The other portraits – Brussels residents from different communities and neighborhoods, each with their own story – such as Dounia Farid, Hicham Farid, Nadir Farid, Valerie De Ketelaere, the Bevernage family and Benoît De Bruyn (NewTree) will be used in print and online.

The campaign will also be supported by radio, mini-docs and a making of. Telenet is also giving away some lockdown portraits to its customers. In addition, Telenet is also offering inspiring tips, tricks and creative solutions to get through this period at

Finally the campaign won Bronze in Outdoor & Photography at the CB Awards

Enough was enough

But after 3 months of talking to screens, enough was enough. Time to get outside and discover real life again. This campaign by Telenet and TBWA features several computers. While they convince us to “deconnect”, they are sensitively portrayed by photographer and director Jef Boes.

The striking thing is that this call to digital detox comes from the provider with the fastest broadband network in Belgium. It is therefore no coincidence that the campaign was followed by an offer to get back on track after detox at low cost.

Brand: Telenet
Client: Maartje Berben
Agency: TBWA Belgium
Creative Director: Jeremie Goldwasser
Creative team: Kenn Van Lijsebeth, Greg Van Buggenhout
Account team: Nicolas De Bauw, Max Fauconnier, Ellen Van Praet
Art buyer: Elly Laureys
Photographer: Jef Boes
Production company: Initials LA
Post production: MAKE – Katrien Van Den Brande
Montage: Xavier Pouleur
Radio Production: MAKE – Lauranne Van Der Heyden
Sound: Jan Pollet