Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Goodmans' Goodguys and Goodphotos

Good Threads guiding children through the selection f books at the Good Threads clothing distribution in Tucson.
The crew at First Place, where this night, the downs residents cook dinner for the senior residents. First place is a community where people with downs syndrome live an autonomous life in their own apartments in a complex with retirees who have their back when they need a little help or guidance. First Place is constructing a new complex right on light rail on Central Avenue.

           So the Goodmans folks had an interesting idea they wanted to bring to life, and at the recommendation of a friend, they had a look at my work, and decided my style and approach fit seamlessly.

           The project, to photograph some of the organizations that the office structures company supports in the Phoenix and Tucson areas. Document what they do, for the creation of huge black and white prints to hang in the newly remodeled Goodmans office space to serve as a regular inspiration to Goodmans employees who work often split their work days between office structures sales and installation with their ongoing support of selected non-profits.

           It was a fun and amazing project and I wanted to thank Julia Zolondz, Allison Van Dyke and the crew at Goodmans Office Structures for the opportunity to create this work.

In the Read Better Be Better program a "Big," reads for his two "Little" charges in the RBBB after school reading program designed to raise the reading level of third graders when it is most critical.
Goodmans own AIM to Make a Difference program re-purposes used and refurbished office furniture to give to 501(c)3 organizations who need the help.

Free Arts gives access to the arts to at risk children to harness the healing power of the arts. We spent a wonderful day documenting Free Arts' good works at the Children's Museum in Phoenix.

Local First Arizona reaches out to local businesses and teaches them about sustaining local markets by switching at least ten percent of their spending power to local businesses, keeping income local, and circulating in the community, and supporting the many small businesses as a result.
Sense of scale: I had no idea until later in the project just how big these would be!
With Helene from Local First on of the organizations that is supported in part by Goodmans.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Photographic Decathalon

          Just over 21 years after winning the decathlon  gold medal in the Atlanta Olympics, Dan still takes flight with explosive power. Now, 1996's World's Greatest Athlete, is a track and field broadcaster, a coach, an event emcee, as well as continuing to be involved with the US Olympic Committee, can still bring it.

          One steamy Scottsdale morning he works out. He blasts through the air demonstrating for my camera and me, this return aloft after being grounded by a bulging disk. As we shoot images for  a Living Well article about pain management, Dan is eager to show how a pain center's treatment enabled his return to training.

          He volunteered to do some strength drills for the image, and was incredibly patient as I sketched with my camera, trying to find the image that had vaguely formed in my head just two days earlier when the assignment landed in my inbox.

          We tried different things, arms up, arms down, jumping while in stride, jumping from standstill. As we did this in a sand volleyball court, to minimize impact, I got lower in the sand with each attempt.

          Discovering the composition I wanted, we spent more time with more jumps, fine tuning until his extended hands didn't cover his face, and the sun didn't throw shadow of his hands onto his face. I got low enough to separate him from the landscape and place him against the puffy clouds that were nice enough to show up for us that day.

          That done, we explored some other ideas giving my editors plenty to chose from, whether the layout called for one image or many.

          Over delivering in a case like this is actually delivering just what the client needs to have options if space allows to pursue a collection of layout possibilities.


Friday, September 1, 2017

Grandma becomes Temp Mom; Creativity Finds Another Gear

Grandson is eager to show off his
newly-developed one-on-one skills
          Earlier in the summer, we worked on a story with Raising Arizona Kids Magazine talking about Kinship Care as a fostering option.

          Grandma, Kelly Ray jumped right in when her kiddos needed her with a great mix of stability, discipline, love and fun.

           On this day while they play in the courtyard of the apartment complex she challenges the grandson to a little one on one.

          Then she spreads out a blanket on the grass in front of her apartment and breaks out the coloring books. The kids swarm to join her in some coloring before homework time.

          As the sun begins to wane, it's time to join her at the table for homework, and when the kids get a bit rambunctious, a little study break for a game that involved some energy-burning jumping, all before dinner.

          Photographing kids who are in foster care, even if related to their care-giver , always involves obscuring the kids' identities. It's a challenge for a photojournalist whose work largely depends upon the emotional expressions that spread across peoples' faces. 

          When in a story you're not able to show faces, your creativity kicks into another gear as you try to make photographs that tell the story and are visually interesting, if not intriguing, without fully showing faces.

Coloring on the grass
Math homework

Homework time
Jumpy-jump, a little energy burn
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