To India….or not to India. THAT is the question…..

Recently, I spent some time with a friend whom our church supports and they wondered why I had not been to assist at the Children’s Home they run in India, since every year a team comes once or twice. I had a lot of excuses….but none that would hold any water. Especially with a woman who relies completely on the God of the universe for all things, and as of today has never been left wanting. for anything. I mean, anything. Quite a testimony, and the pressing question was (and still is….) “If you believe in the God of the Bible, what real reason do you have not to trust that He will make a way for you to come to my home, in support of this faithful ministry?”
Ever the pragmatic, I really can only think of one thing…..and as shameful as it is for me to admit, the bottom line is, in fact, the bottom line.
You see, everything I produce with my corporate photography, goes back into my corporate photography business. I (and by proxy, my family!) live fairly frugally, we have not taken an actual vacation since my honeymoon…..mostly because I LIVE on vacation.

All work....really.

However, my family rarely gets to go with me to all these locations…..I am after all, actually at work….but last year, Lisa went by herself to India on a church trip to offer assistance to said Home. She came back transformed…. And she has been adamant that at least I should go this time….and meet with the very presence of God. So, reluctantly, I have agreed and in line with my deep Biblical understanding, I am steadily making deals with God….and I want to include all of you in my deal making, Dear Readers!

In an effort to keep my business all business-as-usual, I will not ask for support for this trip. But I will make a trade; by offering family photography to those who would like to give toward my mission. I will readily admit, families, portraits, and stuff are not my forte…. But I have a few examples……If you have a need for some family images and want to give ( generously….come on!) toward me arriving in India, take a look at these and give a call. I will give you a disk with copyright released images from which you can print as many as you want, in any size you want, in trade for what ever you think they are worth…..hmmmmmm, perhaps that should read,” ….in trade for what you are willing to give to make me feel better…..”.

Truly, I have no idea what value to place on these images….But I do know that I want to trust God to provide specifically in this instance, for this instance…..so, we shall see….


 

 

 

 

 

 

The deadline approaches quickly, so I look forward to seeing if this project will be self-sustaining! or….if I get to keep taking pictures of my family for the archives….India, HO!

I shoot Rock N’ Roll…..

As miserably uncool as I may seem, I sometimes pull off being a bit Rock “N”Roll…..I have even been paid to shoot it! what a gig! I haven’t really pursued the music industry very hard, as I find entertainers characteristically a narcissistic bunch who have to out-cool whomever they come in contact with….and that includes me. However, wouldn’t you know it, I keep finding humble, dedicated, and rectified people to make me eat those words….here are a few examples….


This is Shondrea, a producer of the likes of Ludacris and many other names you may not know….


This is is American Revolution….they look cold because it was 10 degrees the day of photography.


here’s Yung Joc……pretty nice guy, but all business…..seems quite popular….we got MOBBED out on the street shooting this picture….guess I shoulda thought about that before putting him on the busiest street in south Atlanta….


Katie is a great Christian artist…has a record or two out…..this is the cover art for “meadows of mercy” ….hence the concept ….meadow….. told you I wasn’t too cool….

here’s Nova4Jehovah….he let me just do what I wanted….so we trespassed onto a condemned bridge…..dodged the cops, which is always good for your street cred.I actually shot him on two occasions but I’ll hold it to one image here…..

what to do with your hands? hmmmmm….I can’t help being a bald headed white guy.

so, if you’re a little bit country or a little bit rock ‘n’ roll….then I’m your man…….but only if you give out cool lessons while we’re at it…

the old FDC

Many years ago, my dear Mother In Law gave me a box of old cameras as studio decoration (that’s right….I had a STUDIO!). Some were quite old, others not too old, but I accepted them with great relish since I love old gadgets and such. When I was in college , a few years ago, we built our own cameras that were our ONLY authorized classroom tool for the first year (!) so, I felt quite confident that I could get one or two of these relics back in the game. The one that seemed particularly best for refurbishment (or total destruction…) was a 1956 Agfa copy of Brownie’s 620 camera. made for the American market, but manufactured in Germany it had refinements that the Brownie didn’t have, namely a glass optic (albeit a single element! more like a magnifying glass!). I replaced the shutter spring, sanded all the friction points, and then went to building a way to transport modern 120 film through a 620 gate. That proved the toughest part, but eventually I felt like I had a reliable film transport system and could use film manufactured today as opposed to 620 which saw it’s last production run a while back. In all I put about five dollars in parts into it……hence the name: FDC…..Five Dollar Camera.
I don’t have the first roll I shot through the camera, but I have many subsequent rolls….take a look…..

Now for the real thing:



This camera has made the rounds….and I continue to use it….the venerable FDC, still going strong after 60 years…..

What can I do?

When I think of the word “need” I don’t have to look far to see someone with one ( or two….), Recent events in Haiti come to mind, but that’s merely the most recent one. I have had the great opportunity to photograph a ministry ( http://www.mustministries.org) that I think does a fantastic job of serving needs locally…..and they have done so quietly, consistently for many years. I’ve watched them grow to expand their services to meet an overwhelming demand and am humbled and honored that I was called upon to help them in some way……I can’t do very much for them, but this I could do….

Folks that need a clean, warm, dry place to sleep can find it here. I think the best part is the warm smile and cheerful hearts one will find….every time.

Every person I met was happy and glad to be doing what they could for someone else. This gentleman is the longest serving volunteer….he had a lot to share, best of all, a steady calmness that would benefit anyone.

Other slightly younger volunteers do heavier lifting, but again with a cheerfulness that is contagious……I smiled all day.

a couple of hundred hot meals are served each day…..and it was good, I’m tellin’ you.

I found a genuine concern and love for everybody that walked through the door……even me……kind of makes you want to hang out there all day.

Here are the couple that started it all some years ago with the idea that they would help a handful of homeless people regain a bit of dignity and stability back into their lives……I’m proud to have gotten to know them.

Must Ministries serves a five county area on a shoestring, solely provided by donations from people like you and me that take the words of John 13:34 seriously……

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