More about this Photo soon.
Some have ask “Who” and “Why” ” The Change The Narrative, Shift the Perceptions, Change The Image” Campaign, I hope this helps!
HoodFit is a movement that focuses of self-efficacy and sense of personal agency: HoodFit seeks to amplify the positive attributes in our ‘hood’ that has allowed us to grow strong, experience resilience and exercise strategic problem solving. Mind, Body and Spirit.
This photo is in response to how tired I am of the negativity I was seeing on TV and reading online, every morning about my brothers. I didn’t know any of them! I do know hard working brothers that care about their family and community. I know brothers that work four jobs and still find time to give. I know brothers that remember to share their gifts. My gift is photography, so it’s time to use it.
Replicating the marathon photo is impossible. That’s a powerful photo that is different for every person that looks at it. So it can never be replicated.
However, I am hoping our photo will also show resilience, perseverance, strength and unity – not the mythical, negative stereotypes about men of color: that we cannot put aside our ego’s and come together, or that we are not change agents in our communities. More so hope it will showcase the strength of so many brothers and their son’s, nephews, cousins, grandsons.
Media attention about high Stop and Frisk rate for Men of Color.
While this campaign was started before the recent report and not designed to address this issue, I know and understand the issue first hand. I myself have been profiled and our young men are stopped too often by the police. Numerous organizations and the police have a lot of civic and policy work to do on this issue in order to regain the community’s confidence. Yet, simultaneously, we must recognize the City of Boston and the Boston Police Department have new leadership and a renewed commitment to correcting this challenge. We should hold them accountable for change, however, we cannot let the only outcry be rage. We have to create opportunities for healing. We will ensure the Change the Narrative|Perceptions|Image Campaign provides space for authentic conversations on this subject.
This is our moment. This is our history making moment, this is about honoring our ancestors, this is about our community, this about one heartbeat, this is about legacy.
Join me as we change the narrative, shift perceptions, and change the image for men of color in Boston. I guarantee you if you come with an open mind and an honest heart you will walk away lifted, connected and loved. It all starts with one image.
Saturday, 9am I know you will be there.
I had a great time with the camera at the “Wake Up The Earth Festival” yesterday. The Festival celebrates Jamaica Plains rich cultural diversity, community arts, a commitment to social change and the parks and gardens that are the result of tireless community organizing.
15 Miles Down!
Yesterday was a most wonderful day. Coming off a week of being in the bed with a bad cold, I decided to do what always makes me feel better – take photos. This time it was the Boston Marathon. Honestly, I wasn’t caught up in all the emotion and celebration (for numerous reasons) so I wasn’t sure what I wanted to capture. I went out to Wellesley Center right around the 15 mile mark and the first runners I met and photographed were the Massachusetts National Guardsmen. As a vet watching them walk in step brought back memories of basic training, “Good Times”
The next group that came by was the wheelchair group. I decided it was best if I sat on the ground for their shots yet what was unexpected was how much photographing THEM inspired ME to be better. By using my 70-200mm lens, I was able to get close enough to see a bit of the pain and joy of their 26.2-mile journey.
Up next were the elite runners. I took a few power shots but didn’t really feel the “power” of their run so I decided to stick around and photograph some friends, I knew were running.
While waiting for the next group of runners, I kept reflecting back on a conference I attended at Harvard a few days before titled “Repairing The Breach”. Part of the daylong discussion was “myths about black men”. Myth: there are more black men in jail than college. Truth: there are over a half million more black men in college than in jail.
The more I sat there the more I started to think about how I could help to shift from myth to truth. Then I began thinking about how over the years, I never really saw images of runners of color, especially, the non-elite black men. I’m sure they are out there just not in my circle of knowledge. So, I decided the first step I could take so shortly after the conference was to use my camera to illustrate we were there, we excelled and we made a difference.
I focused on the men of color running. The power I felt while photographing my brothers, and the love they gave me back when they noticed me photographing them, was beyond amazing, Over the next few days, I will post a few of those images so you too can feel their POWER.
Thanks again for stopping by!