29 March, 2009

aligning the stars

Sometimes serendipity is the best form of research. Next to our campsite, at Joshua Tree, we met a group of amateur astronomers setting up for the night. They were obsessed men with a bunch of big glass. When they had aligned with the North Star and the sun had gone down, Eli and I went over for a lesson and some magical moments. Eli, being a big fan of Orion, got to see, close up, the belt and the sword. We were called from telescope to telescope to see Nebula and Galaxies and the most amazing of all Saturn. Our main teacher was a man named Louie Luna... serendipity indeed. Thanks guys!!!

23 March, 2009

As part of a project, we made a stop at "tent city" in Sacramento. This homeless encampment on the banks of the American River has been in the media spotlight recently ....even making it to Oprah for a story about how the economy has been creating a new homeless population.

When I first arrived (and almost got arrested by the park police, and the railroad police, for driving my car onto private property) I found that my initial skepticism turned out to be basically valid. This was not a new "tent city". Many of these folks had been there for months or years. This is their home. Most have drug or alcohol addictions or are criminals and cannot hold a job or housing. These are not Joe and Mary homeowner...now in foreclosed upon and out in a tent. I felt that many, especially the national media, had really mis-represented this story.

I did not have much time to spend as we were on the road and my 6 -year- old was happily locked in the car watching a movie. But I did meet some passionate and charming people out there. Most were sick of the media, one told me to come back after his channel 10 and channel 5 interviews this afternoon. I heard the story of the CNN cameraman who got punched because he lacked common decency and respect of privacy. Did I do any better? I know I did not shoot alot of images but spent most of my time listening to stories and hoping I was not lumped in with some of the other media who the residents felt intrusive.

I hope that my images will help. A few folks said that, even tho the story was mis-represented, they hoped it would help make some positive changes. I hope so too. And I hope it does not get more crowded out there.

22 March, 2009

spring journey

gotta get out of town...see some new stuff.
Long drive to Joshua tree, lot's to see on the way. Rice Hill, Oregon... Orland, California...onward!
Stops for food and for bathroom break in a snow storm. On to better weather.
Nice to have the Eurovan to open wide to the world.
More to come along the way!

08 March, 2009

the old me and the new me

It has been too long since I posted last. Not alot of shooting...mostly learning video editing, putting together my son's class photo book and finishing up my new website. Will have lots to post in the coming weeks. This photo take in 1985 in the Philippines. I was covering the Marcos/Aquino campaign and election. As international journalists tend towards... very bazaar partying occurred after hours. The Hobbit House in Manila proved to be quite an interesting distraction to a very exhausting story to cover. My son, and others, told me this photo was a bit scary. I just remember it as being a blast! Thanks to Karen T. for the print after all these years. Thank goodness someone is organized!