Archive for August, 2017

selies“Life moves so fast. You gotta document the good times, man.” ~ Big Boi

According to Wikipedia,The first partially successful photograph of a camera image was made in approximately 1816 by Nicéphore Niépce.

In just over two centuries through the constant development of technology, we have been able to capture our favorite moments with our most beloved people in our lives.

In the 21st Century, we take photographs of anything and everything that crosses our sight. In the press of a button, people upload an average of 1.8 BILLION images every single day!! That’s billion… with a B.

I have done my fair share of that. And I am unapologetic for many photographs that I have uploaded. And some will never be uploaded or shared because they are taken for personal reasons. (Get your head out of the gutter!)

In 2011, I started traveling. Many of you will remember the countless blog posts of shows that I attended in Houston. I started doing so because I was so excited about traveling that I wanted to share. I have spent a lot of money buying disposable cameras to document my travel, fun moments, and loved ones. And I have spent even more money getting that film developed.

Three years later, I found myself attending events locally. Particularly in the downtown area. As you can imagine, I have met some people and made some friends along the way.

Within those three years, I received an Olympus digital camera as a gift. And since then I have been using it extensively ever since. I didn’t ask or beg for it. It came from the kindness of that person’s heart.

Yet bringing it into the world of smart phones, it seems a bit ancient and archaic. But it still functions as it is supposed to.

Yeah, the flash is super bright. I am aware. People seem to think I don’t know that. I HAVE HEARD MANY OF YOU WHEN YOU THOUGHT I COULD NOT. Gossip-1

Throughout this summer, I have heard people mumbling about me wanting to take photographs. A majority of it actually are people who are complaining and bitching about it behind my back and they don’t think I know about it or even think that I actually heard them as the words actually came from their lips.

If it comes down to you not liking your picture taken, that is your choice. But 99.99999% of the photographs I have taken, that has not been the case. Plus you simply will not receive the benefits. Again, that is your choice.

So it is time for me to set this record straight. Even though I was not asked to, nor do I feel that I should. If I have ever taken a photograph of you, and/or taken a photograph WITH YOU…. you will see that this is for YOUR benefit.

As I stated already, photographs are taken when I wish to document a special moment. Or if I am with people that I have deemed special to keep in my life that I would always want to remember those moments.

Think about for a moment. I WANT to remember that time when I was with you. Flattery should fall upon you, not loathing.

Over the last three years, a majority of my social life has involved entertainment in music. Live music mostly. The Olympus coming right along with me.

So I sit there right up in front of the stage to be able to feel in the moment when the music is playing. I take my photographs to the best of my ability with what I have.

And at the end of the night (by way of habit) I take selfies or pose for pictures with the musicians that are participating. After that I take more pictures of those who also attended. Mostly those whom I have grown to have a personal relationship with.

Then those photographs will obviously be uploaded. And just about everyone whom I have taken a photo with knows it and knows just where to find it.

Good or bad. Pretty or ugly. That is all subjective. They serve a higher purpose than your self-image based opinions. (I don’t like how I look in pictures either. But oh well!)

I have never charged any person or public entity for the photographs that I have taken over the years. It is not a business to me. Other people use photography for business and profit. Kudos to them! If they can make a living from it.. good for them! I wish them all success.

It would be very nice for people to think the photographs that I take are for the following reasons. Because it is 100% true:

  1. Promotion. 100% FREE promotion. People that you do not know are going to see these photographs. If they are ever curious as to what I am doing or what I like, they are going to look to see who and what is there. Musicians and entertainers in particular, if you want the message of what you are doing and saying to be spread to people who don’t know, the photographs I take act as that kind of promotion. And it has been more successful than you think. Just think of the different people’s faces that you see at your events that you never saw before.
  2. Personal documentation & reflection. Many entertainers share the same common dream: Making it big in the business. If nobody knows your product, nobody is going to buy it. And yet personally for those that I believe have the ability and potential to fulfill those dreams, I can hold these images dear to my heart to have the ability to say that I knew you. Chances are that I won’t be able to do so again if at some time you “made it” in your chosen field.

If you are in the entertainment industry, you should have been well aware that people such as I are going to ask to take photographs of you. If you didn’t think about that before, or don’t like your picture taken, you should probably leave the business.

“Graphs” ARE your business.  They are your life. PhotoGRAPHS and autoGRAPHS.

And finally the most personal reason of all. If by now you still are not understanding of why I do what I do, hopefully this will sink in.

In these most recent years, I have had so many people expressing their “concern” about how they wished I would do something more than just sit around the house. I made the choice to go and enjoy music. It was something that for most of my life I never thought that I could do.

I was wrong. I was totally wrong.

Man in wheelchair_0

YES I CAN!!!

Photographing and documenting gives me a reminder that I CAN do these things and that I should do them as much as possible. Life is too short to do nothing!

It is proof positive that I am living a more fulfilling life.

I recall a conversation with a colleague a few years ago. I told them that I was going out to see a particular event and I asked that person if I would see them there.

Unknowingly that person had broken their toe (or foot, I don’t remember specifically) and therefore stated that they could not go anywhere.

I expressed some sympathy towards their most recent plight as I was totally unaware of that happening to them and ended the inquiry and conversation altogether.

Then I was very discouraged and filled with frustration. This person was choosing not to go out because of their temporary situation.

On the other hand MY SITUATION is very permanent. Someone with the worst and most severe form of Spina Bifida, a birth defect is willing to make the choice to go out and have some fun while someone who has more physical ability 99% of their life decides to whine and moan over a temporary setback.

I bring along my digital camera and use it to show to the WORLD that even though I am living with the most severe of disabilities, I make the choice to get out. My photographs are my proof that I have done so. And I hope that it brings encouragement to those who sit at home alone.

So instead of whining about me “always asking to take pictures,” understand what the real reason to it is.  Even if I ask again and again and again and again.

And finally, I want to address something about the selfies that I have taken in the past. A lot of people are thinking incorrectly about them. index

If you already follow me on social media, you know that a vast majority of selfies that I have posted include other females. Not ALL, but a lot of them. That’s my choice.

However more than just a few people have told me that they are jealous of those women. And when I ask them why they are jealous, they say:

BECAUSE THOSE WOMEN ARE SITTING ON YOUR LAP!!

As fun as I think that might be, the only person that has ever sat on my lap in order to take a selfie with them, is Kimberly Freeman from One-Eyed Doll when they are in town on tour. But the last few times she has not done so. I am guessing maybe only two times in all. I also had a friend of mine do so to take a photograph together but she only agreed to do so after a lengthy explanation as to why it would look better in the photograph.

The others have stood close by me to make sure that they are within the shot and they have to squeeze in close to do so.

The truth is that other than Kimberly Freeman, two other women have sat on my lap to take a photo. But those photographs are not uploaded for a purpose. Nor will they ever be. Mainly because at the time they were extremely drunk and it could come back to bite them. So I don’t publish as I refuse to put myself in a situation to be blamed for consequences they could receive for their decision and action.

I think that the truth of the matter is that people in general are afraid to sit upon my lap. Of course again, the exception of those who are extremely intoxicated.

I hope that clears the confusion. There’s no need at all to be jealous.

I still stand firm in the opinion that a person SHOULD sit on my lap for a selfie because it is for their personal benefit so they don’t hurt their back or their legs or knees from squatting or bending over just to make sure they are within frame. But I can not convince the world of it.

And lastly I will end this post with a bit of self defense from what I touched on at the beginning.

A majority of selfies I have taken by myself. I have long arms and can stretch out a digital camera enough to get two people (maybe three) in frame. I honestly would prefer someone else to take the picture for me. I simply just don’t ask any more.

But for those who offer, whenever I hand over the camera I constantly hear comments and remarks about how the camera is a “dinosaur” or outdated technology or whatever. And remarks about the flash being “bright and blinding.”

I am a personal believer in “if you can fix it, you should.”

If you don’t like the flash on the camera or if you cannot figure out the button on the top of the camera is what you press to make the camera function or if you think it is too old, then why don’t you step up and offer to help upgrade it? I don’t have much disposable income as many other people do.

Should I just start another GoFundMe campaign to find a camera in which I can use without a flash and the photos turn out just as well?? Or am I just really stupid in believing that could really be something that someone would want to do???

If you can fix it, you should. So allow me to start you on your journey to help out everyone involved…………………………………

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00RKNND2W/_encoding=UTF8?coliid=I1QJMCDBR7M5ON&colid=14ORUMN2Y06CD

I started out small, I can upgrade and grow as we go along. Does that help???