Saturday September 26th was National Public Lands Day. Nevada is something like 90% public lands, we figured we’d do something with the day.
Actually we found out about something to do on that day and then found out that it was National Public Lands Day.
I received an email talking about a wildlife restoration project an hour and a half north of Vegas near Amargosa at Ash Meadows National Wildlife Refuge. We would be planting native grasses.
See, this valley has a lot of natural springs in it, apparently about 10,000 gallons a minute pour out of the earth after having worked it’s way to this traveling underground from Utah. Upon discovering this, some wise man many a year ago decided that this would be a great place to farm cotton and cattle. Cotton…in Nevada…Really?
I never doubt the dumbness of humanity. Anyway, this person failed. Excellent. In the process though he totally wrecked the natural landscape and oasis. Hence, we planted.
So the reason I was actually in LA was that some of Erin’s family, her grandma and aunt, were flying in for the weekend. As it was going to be Erin, her grandma, aunt, and 3 female cousins, I tried to set it up so that once Erin was with them I could run away and do something else. Me and six chics? Yeah, that’s a run scenario.
I failed. I did get recruited/drafted (happily) to take photos of the day. That was fun and made it less awkward for me. The conversation was overall very good, and it was a very good day. We all got to talk about some of the hard things we’ve all been through lately.
So the family images you are going to see over the next week or so are from that day.
I happened to be in LA a week or so back for about 24 hours.
It so happened that some friends of mine from Aloft Aerial Dance were in town doing some performances as part of their El Circo Cheapo Get Rich Slow Tour. So I, of course, wanted to stop by and take some photos. That’s where the performance images that will be appearing over the next week or two came from.
If you happen to be in Chicago I highly recommend you go see El Circo Cheapo. It’s worth the money, easy, and a really fun Friday night.
The following are a series of panoramics talking about my buddy Damien’s ecovillage, life in it, permaculture, sustainability, and how to make a kickin’ bathroom.
(There are some small issues, tiling to speed load times and low res previews while full res load and that kind of stuff. Just give it a minute to load and look around while you listen to Damien describe his ecovillage.)
More images of crazy tough Scots and athletes of Scottish heavy sports. From the 2009 Las Vegas Celtic Gathering & Highland Games.
Okay, and it’s a really loose edit. (sing along – It’s my blog and I’ll do what I want to, do what I want to.)
In the mix of moving across the country, I’ve fallen behind on some stuff…one of those items is that at the Illinois Press Photographers Association (IPPA) Best of Photography competition I took awards for 1st place in Portrait, HM in Portrait, and 2nd place in Enterprise Picture Story. Also at the Southern Short Course I took 2nd place in Daily Life and 3rd place in Daily Life Story. All and all not to bad. Not great, I’d like to have done better, but on the other hand that’s always true.
The winning entries are related to my story on Michele. Michele is a breast cancer fighter/survivor. I documented you her battle throughout 2008 and into 2009. I hope to continue to document her in the future, even with the flights involved. By the way, if you ever get a chance to meet her, she’s a great human being.
The image below is after her 2nd chemo round, during which she stopped breathing from anaphalatic shock, this is during the elevator right down to the car. This is the image that took first in Portrait.
This is Jeremy Chapman, laughing yoga instructor, and head of the Chicago Laughmore Club (I think that’s the name, but as with all organizations like this, it’s a little loose and hard to get a handle on some basics.) They meet every once and a while, and laugh. No purpose, no point, except the physical, mental and emotional health benefits of laughter. Yes, I’m going to go back and just do this instead of covering hopefully in the future.
Special thanks to my cuz Jackie who spotted this one while she was visiting Chicago. I, alas, totally walked by it without even noting it. I’ve become too hardened to seeing the strange of this universe.
The city had going on today, and again on Wednesday, some dancing in Millennium Park. I didn’t get to stick around as long as I would’ve liked, but hey, whatever. Got an okay image or two, and I always love good break dancing.
If you want to see it it will be happening again on Wednesday from 4-6pm, starts at Crown Fountain (the spitting fountains on Michigan Ave.) and works around the park from there.
This is what I wore to work Saturday night. Note the always sexy fanny pack. It’s hot, oh yeah baby, hot. Also, the farmer’s tan, it’s hard work to get that strong of a farmer’s tan.
More images from this event will follow…when I have time.
This quote is from the coordinator of an event I’m trying to cover this weekend. He is giving me advice on how to successfully cover the event and do so in a way respectful to those participating.
“wear few if any clothes (seriously)”
Now…I don’t know what to say here. Someday I’m going to have seen it all, done it all. Being asked to strip for work, that’s a new one for me. And not all that nice to those around me (time to take on those body image issues). Do what you got to do I guess.
Anyone know where to get some Marvin the Martian boxer briefs in Chicago? And a fedora? Seriously.
So, as I’ve already established, Monday was just incredible, on so many levels. Well, not to rub it in, but this was Sunday.
Sunday started at the loving time of 5:30am, for leaving the house at least. I spent from about 6am till 10am covering Bike the Drive, the annual closing of Lake Shore Drive so that bicyclists can takeover and enjoy it. It was harder to photograph than I expected, but I got a couple of okay images out of it. Suffice it to say, it got covered.
Later in the day was urban golf, through Cudgel. Basically the idea behind urban golf is you get a golf club, a tennis ball, a series of alleys, dress like a 70s golf rock-star hero, and drink your way through the course. It’s a good time, it’s utterly, and totally ridiculous, hence good time. So I got to spend a few hours hanging out with some awesome people, who were fabulously dressed (“I want to look very meticulously terrible.”)
I also decided, that besides wanting to cover this again in the future, when I do so, I’m playing next time. It’s not so rushed that I can’t, and hell, my journalism has to get more gonzo. (If you don’t know what Gonzo-journalism is, first and foremost I hope you aren’t a journalist, if you are a journalist and don’t know that term I’m kicking your ass. The wikipedia entry is pretty good. I tend towards being a bit more factually accurate, but the whole getting into the middle of events thing I’m all into. While I may be an observer of life more than a participator, I’m at least going to observe from pointblank range. I believe that I can only truly portray a situation if I feel a situation which means being absorbed by the situation which done by being totally and wholly in a situation. Got it?) I need to be more gonzo. I’m doing better, but I must get more involved, almost every image I’m happy-ish with comes from a situation I’m totally absorbed by and in.
Live and learn.
(and the dork in the yellow, is the reporter I was working with. For a reporter (which sets the bar pretty low) he’s pretty good all around.)