rollerblading and plumeria

with zoe. saturday, april 6th, 2019. boise, idaho.

she came into my room and asked me if i could help her get down the stairs into the garage because she had already put her rollerblades on in her room (haha). She also needed a helmet. She asked if I would then watch her rollerblade. I asked if I could take pictures, too. She said, of course! I was pleasantly surprised. Photos aren’t always allowed with this one. I respect that; she’s much more willing than I was as a kid.

then she picked a bouquet for mom. i had to discourage her from picking the bulbs out front. i thought mom would like those better in the ground. but the plumeria is plenty.

marfa, texas - yeah field trip!

you went to ….where?
for what? with who?

marfa texas is a small community 2 hours south east of el paso that frequently takes in visitors from all over the world who gather there, often for the arts. this year it was the site of yeah field trip, which is a 3 day conference/workshop, simply put, for photographers and other media creatives. each day had multiple time slots with different classes to choose from, taught by other creatives, on a variety of topics, from business and art direction to meditation and hands on activities like block printing and styled photoshoots. it was a magical land filled with inspiring, like minded, talented, forward thinking people, and we were all set up in this vulnerable, open, and honest space where we could discover and embraces ourselves. thats exactly what i did. i heard things in class that i only had previously thought about in my own head. my path and whwas reaffirmed. i experienced vulnerability and love. the truth that we’re all going to die united us.

i didnt focus on shooting, but of course i did so when i was compelled, but not usually when everyone else was. these photos are primarily of new friends or little moments.

joey

When Joey and I found each other via instagram and were discussing doing a shoot, he mentioned he wanted to be photographed in a white dress by an abandoned building and I was immediately sold. I want nothing more than photo photograph real people showing their truths and challenging social standards.

We left Boise for Oregon in search of a 100 year old abandoned concrete factory and instead found part of it, collapsed into rocks, ash, and thick wires. It was nightfall. We made it work.

sony a7rr ii / sigma 50mm and 35mm 1.4 art lenses
processed in lightroom / color graded in PS with Infinite Color Panel / no retouching

2018-10-11 Joey Earthed-16 copy.jpg

joey’s words

“Whoever you are, you leave an impact wherever you go. It does not matter if you are the most important person in the world or not: the energy you put into this world affects more than just you.

Showing my truth is the only way people can truly get know me. I have struggled my whole life finding a place to which I could belong. My skin was too dark, I was too flamboyant, I was too tall. All these fact about me that people would use to crush me. At times I could not look at myself in the mirror, because I did not know the person looking back at me. I would try and change to fit in, do anything in my power to be normal. In the end I never could.

It was not until I began to understand my own identity that truly felt alive. I stopped caring how everyone else saw me and started caring more about how I felt. Looking at myself now I’ve learned this is the person I was born and there is no one that can take that away from me.

To be of color In a place that people don’t match means you have to work harder to recognize yourself. I have to be okay that I was born with beautiful black skin and the fact that people only tore me down because they did not understand the power that came with.

I do not let other people define be my my skin nor my sexuality.

Tough on the outside to protect myself, an energy inside was ignored; this feeling that I did not have the same feelings as those around me. Being true to myself meant accepting all parts, masculine and feminine. Looking at them separately, neither are who I am, but together they are the way I can express myself. Naturally I lean towards the more feminine side of the spectrum. For a while I was shamed into thinking that a true man would never reveal his softer side. It’s taken me the majority of my life to finally come to the realization that everyone is different, with different emotions and different feelings. We cannot all be the same but no one should feel ostracized for expressing who they truly are.

I chose to wear a white dress as a statement to the world that I don’t care. I don’t care about the stereotypes or the negative comments. I care about showing people that are afraid to stand out that it is okay to be completely different than everyone else. Strength is not always measured by being masculine, its by letting go.

The idea of showing vulnerability in an environment hardened by time, was echoed throughout the series. I am proud to be have my black skin and I am proud to express my femininity.

I am proud to be myself in a world that continues to tell me I do not belong.

This Is just the beginning.


venice, italy

After Trieste and before Paris, I met Sarah, my close friend since 8th grade, in Venice. She was studying abroad in Bologna. 

verdict:
beautiful stucco color palettes
glass china everywhere
touristy
should have taken a water taxi