A Story, An Image:

Reflecting on the an equitable way to empower and illuminate a community through the arts.
September 2021

    While traveling to back and forth from Texas to Camp Pendleton in 2004, I shot about twenty-seven rolls of film. At the time, my roommate Matt worked at Calumet and would develop his own film. He offered to process my many rolls of film as well. I would wait patiently for the roll containing this image to be processed. I thought about it all the time, wondering whether it would come out as I shot it.

    When the image was finally produced I was ecstatic. I could not believe I captured it. I was so excited about it. Matt recommended that I enter the photo into the Del Mar Fair photo exhibition. He would have it matted at the store and submit it for me. I did not have big ideas about winning. I had only been shooting for maybe three or four months.

    I did not place, but I did receive eight out of a possible ten. I recall meeting one of the judges that juried the show. She was an employee of the camera store. She asked about how I was able to create the blue hue in the top of the image. It was strange as I knew she had already asked Matt the same question prior. I told her and she feigned interest. I would later learn from Matt that my image was not selected because she wanted to make sure her friend’s work was included.

    I did not attend the photo exhibition. I was satisfied with having an image reviewed and scored in a photo exhibition. I recall the pride I felt after collecting the image from the fair. I knew that I wanted to continue taking photographs, that I might have found an additional outlet of expression outside that of skateboarding, writing, and collage.