Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Today I got to shoot a little boy named Claudio (5). He is the son of Jen one of Colleen's friends here in NOLA. She is also a photographer herself. I had so much fun shooting Claudio and even a little bit of his younger brother Mason (2 1/2). The two were so full of energy as little kids are, taking shoes off, running back and forth and back and forth again.

Here are some images from today's shoot:

Claudio (5) sits on a ledge at the park where his mother takes him and younger brother Mason (2 1/2) to play.

Claudio (5) puts his shoes back on after getting a small cut on the bottom of his foot and a band-aid to heal the tears.

Like most little kids, Claudio (5) kept taking his shoes off in different places.

Claudio (5) lies in the middle of the park.

More Images

 Shaniya (9) whispers to younger sister Shamiya (7) the answer to a riddle in their grandpa Robert Green's home.
Shamiya comes out of the bathroom at her grandfather's, (Robert Green) house, after laughing because her mom packed her two pairs of pants and no tops.

Going Out Early Once Again

I didn't get a chance to post pictures last night I tried editing some but didn't put them up. I got up at 6 today so we can leave at 7 to go to an oil affected area. There won't be oil but we can tell already what sort of impact the oil has had on NOLA. A man yesterday said it's been so hot this summer and they couldn't even swim because of BP...so they couldn't really go to the beaches because of all of the oil. That's sad I think.

Today I'm going to call Jennifer and see if she can meet with me. We thought this would seem slow, which it did the first couple of days but it's catching up on us, well me at least!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Quick Post Before Dinner

I thought I would post quick before I go out to dinner. I had the chance today to sleep in! Yay! But then we did some quick shopping like actual tourists bought some keychains and magnets. Then we got "cited" for being pretty girls by a fake police officer who was actually raising money for New Orleans Meals on wheels. It was a pretty funny way to get people interested so Niky and I both donated a dollar to him.

I was told I couldn't get into the edible school yard because the head chef was unavailable for the week because the school is on break. Colleen decided it would be a good idea to just go and maybe get some pictures outside of it. So a few of us went and Becky suggested after walking around the outside of the fence that I should climb on top of the van and take pictures over the fence. So as I was climbing a woman pulled up in a pick up and when she got out Becky started to talk to her. She said it was okay if we went in. So we did and I took lots of pictures of the plants and the outdoor classroom. But it was really hard trying to show that it was a schoolyard not just a garden. But then a girl named Alisha came, she was a junior at another school but she used to go to school there when the edible school yard first started and now she works there. Then after that someone else showed up. It ended up being the garden teacher! Which was super exciting I got to talk to them about the school, gardening and their personal lives a little bit. I got some great pictures and will edit after dinner and possibly post a few of my favorite and some of the shoot yesterday.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

The Bare Minimum

Very short post tonight I have had very little sleep in the last couple days, the coolest tan lines you've ever seen and a really bad headache. But I got some great shots in today and now I'm going to get some well needed rest....

Saturday, September 25, 2010

My Two Favorites From Day 1

Dedication- I've totally done this before thanks to Rich Ryan...

First Day Out

So guess who was up and ready by 6:30 am after going to bed after 3:00 am...yes, yes I made it. Along with everyone else, well one person missed it. It was beautiful. We went and walked around Bourbon Street which was quite a bit different from the three hours before. Pictures to come soon I wanted to get an initial post for the day before I get into pictures. We also took a "Hurricane Katrina Tour" which I wasn't too sure about because I'm never really into those real touristy things. As we were on the buses we passed people sitting on their porches and I kept wondering what are they thinking about us?

Also, Shelly had a good day it was nice of her to share her contact with Devin and I. I have a solid appointment tomorrow morning with Robert and his granddaughters. I knew Robert had a rough story but I didn't know if I wanted to hear it until Shelly did her documentary and told us about it and all that. But after meeting him and he was willing to let me photograph his granddaughters I figured it was time and for the record I just spent the last 20 minutes crying. Here is a link: http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2005/katrina/green.family/map/roof.html. This was incredible. I knew there was a hint of something bad, you know going into his yard that two people had died, an older woman and a younger one, only 3 years old. Then when he was talking to me he said it's okay tomorrow if I want to ask them questions while we shoot. He said they aren't phased by what happened if you ask them they won't be emotional is what I'm getting out of it, because they were so young, two and four years old. Their sister was in between them at three. He said that even though they watched their sister fall into 25 feet of water they're not phased. WOW.  I couldn't even believe what I read. That's all I can say. You have to read it and I don't think anyone can get through that story without reacting in a similar way to the way I did.

To answer my question from above from one person's perspective, Robert said and I'm paraphrasing so don't take this as a quote from him, but something a long the lines of the people on those buses care enough to come see what has happened and that's a good thing. It shows that people want to help New Orleans.

Oh Bourbon Street How I Now Love You

So as a group we decided to follow Niky along to her shoot at The Royal Sonesta to shoot her Burlesque dancers and it was pretty fun. I hope she got some good shots in considering the conditions and it sounds like she got a great interview. I can't wait until I start making progress and doing some good work on my project. Props to Niky for starting the first night! Maybe I'll throw up my images later but we'll see. Everyone is so nice here :)

I also found Sara Herbst's twin tonight! They could pass as twins for sure! I'll have to post either my images or video so Sara can see!

As you can see I posted this at about 3 am and I have to be up at 6 yay for sun rise shooting and we'll be back to Bourbon Street...I Love this....

Friday, September 24, 2010

It's Real As Of Now

So we are officially mostly unpacked and in our hotel room. After a good flight, where we met some French-Canadians who were proud to say so...but not until after they asked us if lower 80s was hot or not....they then continued to practice their suture knots with dental floss. Quite entertaining and as if we didn't have enough entertainment they continued to tell us how the floss was going to turn into a friendship bracelet...ha. Wow.

Well tomorrow should be exciting, the first sunrise shoot is at 6:30am on Bourbon Street.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

It's creeping up on us...

I am for sure not packed but the reality of hauling lots of equipment onto a plane and around New Orleans has set in. I'm having nightmares about uncharged batteries, forgetting equipment and even one where I forgot how to use the equipment. Funny how photographers have nightmares of these things vs. getting things stolen or bad weather. This by far is going to be one of the most exciting things I've done since I started at this school. So glad I transferred.........

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

If You Call Yourself A Photographer You Must Look At This....


Hurricane Story was made into a book by Jennifer Shaw the images are amazing and by the last one I was almost in tears and happy and a full spectrum of feelings at the same time. I am a huge fan of square format and anyone who is a photographer needs to look at her website.

It's Count Down Time....!

So I haven't updated lately, but New Orleans is in 3 days! I'm excited and nervous. I haven't heard anything back from a contact I made through my instructor so I haven't even gotten her phone number! Scary... but I still have a couple days and I want to make some solid appointments soon.

I am focusing on children at least one for sure, some shots that I hope to get are:

- a shot of a classroom, from behind all of the children focusing on the teacher
- some shots of a kindergartner as they get ready for school and coming home
       -brushing teeth
       -putting back pack on
       - facing out of the door with backpack on
       - coming inside the house, shot from inside facing the model

This clearly depends on if I get someone who is willing to let me into their home with them.

Click Here: This Looks So Tasty!!

Click through until you find the "Muffuletta"..... Looks so good. Yum.

Monday, September 13, 2010

"You're a Gamma Phi Beta for Life"

I can't believe I didn't think of this earlier but last week I finally realized I should look to see if there is a Gamma Phi Beta collegiate chapter or Alumni chapter near where I'm staying. Turns out there's one less than  5 miles away! So I contacted both chapters and have yet to hear back from the Alumni chapter but received a very nice email from the President of the Collegiate Chapter. She was very polite and it was nice to have a fellow GPB be so awesome and helpful. 

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Interesting Story About Spike Lee


Cool interview with Spike Lee, check it out.

I've Made Contact!

So yesterday I decided to email the person in charge of Project Fleur-de-lis since it was outside of the hours when I found the information. I just checked my email and guess what? He answered back and I must say it's VERY exciting to finally see something in your in box when calls didn't work.

I emailed explaining who I was, what I'm doing and when I'll be there. I then explained how I will be trying to focus mainly on 5 year old children, so pre-k and kindergarten students. I also sent a link to my blog so they could see the progress that I have been making and that way they know it's a real person trying to make a contact.

He responded saying they have 58 schools participating in their program and he is going to ask who would best fit and be willing to let me in.

My freaked out feeling I had while walking in to school is now replaced with total excitement. NOW this project seems real.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

New Group Found

In researching for my project I've found a group, or more so an action called Project Fleur-de-lis.

The website is http://www.project-fleur-de-lis.org

Here is the "Our Project" section of the website. I almost can't believe someone put something like this together. It's great though that this has been put in place to help children of all ages before problems get worse.

Project Fleur-de-lis™ core services aim to:
• address symptoms of trauma at the earliest stage before they interfere with a child’s educational, social or emotional functioning;
• heal school communities through multidisciplinary programing that utilizes best practice intentions.
• remain integrated in school communities to provide ongoing mental health care.

Project Fleur-de-lis™ provides specialized training and professional support for school-based counselors. To give the highest level of care, counselors use a cutting-edge electronic records system to track students’ progress and connect with participating physicians, psychologists and therapists.
Project Fleur-de-lis™ facilitates the following comprehensive services based on need.

For Children
• School-wide intervention programs
• Classroom-based intervention programs
• In-school counseling
• Assessment, evaluation and referral by professional counselors
• Individual and family counseling
For Parents and Teachers
• Educational and healing workshops
• Wrap-around services such as food, clothing and financial assistance
Project Fleur-de-lis™ employs the following trauma informed interventions within its tiered model of care: Classroom-Camp-Community-Culture Based Intervention (Macy, Macy, Gross & Brighton, 2006) Cognitive Behavioral Intervention for Trauma in Schools (CBITS) (Jaycox, 2003), and Trauma Focused – Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (Cohen, Mannarino & Deblinger, 2006).
Three Tiers of Care
Project Fleur-de-lis™ is designed to help traumatized students via a "Stepped Trauma Pathway" that includes the interventions listed above. Project Fleur-de-lis™ is designed to also identify and address all other psychological or psychoeducational problems that occur in children and adolescents. Studies show that 80 – 90% of those touched will be helped in the first tier of care."

I want to contact someone at this organization and see what they're all about in person.

My Favorite Images From The Past Year

Advanced Lighting - Final Project (earlier in the shoot)

Advanced Lighting - Final Project (earlier in the shoot)

Advanced Lighting - Final Project

Advanced Lighting - Very last frame of a two hour shoot that started at 8pm due to both of our busy schedules.

Advanced Lighting - Final Project ( portrait of my sister )

Personal - I caught my little sister looking at herself in the mirror.

Digi Darkroom - My interpretation of "Bandaids" (w/ 2 characters) By Shel Silverstein, his text on the background.

Digi Darkroom - My interpretation of "Bandaids" By Shel Silverstein,  his text on the background.

Editorial - Dakota County Fair

Editorial - Night Portrait w/ Speedlight

Editorial - Participant in the 1st Annual High Heel Dash (Minneapolis, MN)

Digital Darkroom - Environmental Portrait (120mm film)

Digital Darkroom - Environmental Portrait (120mm film)

Digital Darkroom - Environmental Portrait ( 120mm film)

Digital Photo - Landscape w/ Model

Digital Photo - Landscape w/ Model

Vertical/Color "Lost Dog"

Originally taken for use in Alternative Photography but never used it.

Advanced Lighting - Textural Still Life ( Personalized to me)

Advanced Lighting - Textural Still Life (Personalized to me)

Advanced Lighting - Reflective Objects

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Just Remembered....

I feel so bad, but I just realized I should give credit to whom my profile photo belongs. Even though a simple "snapshot" it was taken by my friend Matthias Orfield. If you're interested here's his site. He has some awesome images.


More Research

Over the past two days I've narrowed by subject down to the Katrina Babies and where and how they are doing now. In trying to make my first contact I emailed a reporter of the Times Picayune after reading her story about a baby born 3 days before Katrina.
I did put the link in my last post but to make it easy, here it is again


It is a wonderful article and I do suggest reading it if you have the time.

I've done some research using Proquest here at school. I've printed out some articles from Psychology journal and education journals about the issues that deal with the babies of Katrina who are now growing up.