Did you know that’s what “Prom” is actually short for? I didn’t, until about 15 seconds ago when I googled “prom” to see what came up. (Is is possible to digress before one even gets to their main subject?) So my sister is at her senior prom as I write this and I went along to the gushing-parent-camera-fest this afternoon before all the couples went off to dinner. I got out my long glass and stayed as far away from the front lines as possible, trying to lose myself in all the little prom-y things that make prom… prom. And yes, that is her boyfriend wearing those spiffy black Chucks.
I don’t know what it is about going back to Columbia but every time I visit I end up taking hundreds and hundreds of photos, staying out way too late, and then leaving feeling recharged regardless. Maybe it is just the joy I feel I am surrounded by everywhere, in both the people and places I visit. Anyway, here are some of my favorite shots from the weekend. Pretend I created a separate post for each one since they don’t really connect in any particular way.
There is something about the old, single-story houses near downtown Columbia, just north of Broadway and east of 9th Street. From the sidewalk it is easy to see that they have been well lived in; they wear faded coats of cracked and peeling paint and sit nestled in messy gardens. Inside, patched living room walls would tell stories of clumsy movers, rowdy house guests and drunken mistakes (the secret details of which are safely locked away). The squeaky hardwood floors are overdue for a proper coat of sealant; deep gouges track the paths of couches shoved aside for impromptu dance parties. For the people lucky enough to write their names on the mailboxes, the rent is cheap and everything of necessity is within walking distance. Food, music, bars, parks… However, new residents inherit lingering plumbing problems, drafty doors, unreliable sockets and other eccentricities, necessitating creative solutions. Little notes warn visitors, “DO NOT OPEN ALL THE WAY” “WATER VERY HOT.” Countless friendships, loving couples and budding families began in these homes.
Each house is caked in memories as thick as the grime around the stove burners, yet, like my favorite pair of winter boots, they feel comfortable and familiar as soon as I step inside. And when the stormy season starts each spring–the rain splashing against the shingles and running down the window panes–there is nowhere I’d rather wake up than one of those old houses.
Thanks to my great friends for opening their homes to me each time I visit!
If you have lived in or partied in any of these houses, please share a story…
While in California last week, Andrew Crawford and I escaped city life to explore the Dripping Springs Trail in Cleveland National Forest. After seven miles back and forth up the side of a mountain, past lots of weird plants (and an alarming amount of coyote poo), we reached the saddle with an awesome view and pitched a tent for the night. Great hike, only saw a few other people, all of whom seemed equally as glad to be wandering around in the woods as we were.
Local designer and Project Runway finalist Christopher Straub had his first show at the Saint Paul Hotel (in St. Paul, Minn.) on April 25. Arriving through a back door, I accidentally wandered right into the dressing room where Straub and the models were getting ready. I had met Straub (second photo below) previously at Spill The Wine so I said hello and took a few candids. It turned out to be a very neat place to shoot while organizers were setting up the runway across the hall.
The actual show was very well-lit and the press pool had plenty of room to shoot as the models walked. Interesting that astroturf has just the right shiny-ness to give a runway a glitzy look and some added depth. I’m saving that idea for a future shoot…
Alter/Nation was a clothing swap and alteration fest at the old Grain Belt Bottling House in NE Minneapolis on April 24. There were also two very short, very informal runway shows that I believe were showcasing recycled pieces. I liked the space and the abundant light, however, there were too many photographers all elbowing each other for the best spot to shoot. Crouched at the end and shooting a bit wider, I actually liked how the white backdrop acted like a vacuum and made people look like they were floating. These are the kinds of things I amuse myself with while shooting.