Reflections on Analog Collage’s and Recovering Items from South Congress

I was able to venture down to Congress on Friday and scavenge a few items for the collage project. It was difficult to find items that I felt would enhance my collage. It had just rained the previous night, so most of the items I came across were soaked and needed to be dried off. I found a few interesting treasures, but most of what I found would be considered litter along the sidewalks and in gutters of South Congress. I found a few small toys, some loose change, a few fallen leaves, and a key which probably unlocks the real treasure. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to canvas the area and look for locks, because I had a class starting at 11:00am. When I was finished with class I raced to the digital lab to make some scans of my South Congress artifacts.

The lab monitor said she didn’t know much about scanning so it was up to me to remember what Bill had said in the scanning demo the previous Wednesday. I placed a clear transparency between my soiled items and the crisp surface of the fancy Epsom scanner. I lined up my image in scan-preview, adjusted my marque, and then made my first of 10 scans. It was relatively self explanatory and I was finished within the hour. I made a few prints to use on my collage and shortly after, I exited the lab. Now that I had fresh scans of my items I was ready to put the pieces of my project together.

I purchased some black foam core presentation board to compose the two collage’s. I began by carefully cutting out all the images I planned to use on the project. Once I had finished cutting everything out, I focussed on tearing construction paper to add layers to the scene. After I had my background, middle-ground and foreground, I began placing my images in different areas to get a feel for the scene I wanted. When I had them in just the right places I began to glue them down one by one. I used 2 glue sticks and half a bottle of super glue to attach the pieces of the collage.

I wanted to give the collage a different setting. I used a rural highway as the backdrop for both collages. It seemed like a more open setting that would give my images room to to exist in the focal points without competing for attention with a busy city backdrop. I’m looking forward to the next collage process.

Photographer – Atiba Jefferson

Atiba Jefferson is a well-know photographer who has made his living shooting skateboard photos as well as portraits of famous athletes and musicians. The bulk of his work has been capturing the world of professional skateboarding. He has shot many big names in the industry and has captured some amazing moments in skateboard history. Atiba works in both color and black-and-white photography. He often uses flashes or other forms of artificial light to bring out greater detail and create a deeper, more rich looking image. He applies thoughtful framing to help position his subject in the perfect focal point. Jefferson’s work has been on the covers of several top skateboard magazines. As a skateboarder, photographer, and avid reader of skateboard publications some of my favorite images have been taken by Atiba. One of my favorites is of Andrew Reynolds doing a frontside flip while tons of kids crowd around to watch him skate. This image has such a strong feeling; skater in mid-air and a sea of cheering fans circling the stair set. Take a look at this interview for more information and examples of his work. Atiba’s gift is capturing those moments and creating them in his portraiture. He continues to be an inspiration to me and many others.

Andrew Rynolds. Shot by Atiba Jefferson. Ice Cube. Shot by Atiba Jefferson. Michael Jordan. Shot by Atiba Jefferson. Anthony Van Englan. Shot by Atiba Jefferson.

Congress Photos Round III

Reflective Essay

I decided that I wanted to photograph a different section of Congress. I wanted to head further north and closer to the bridge to see if I could find different subject matter and give a new perspective to my photos using the Laws of Gestalt. The overall feeling of the area I ended up shooting is a little rougher and not as polished or tourist friendly as the SoCo shopping district. As I made my way toward the bridge, I felt drops of rain begin to fall on the back of my neck. I wondered how hard it was going to rain; I didn’t want to get caught out in the open with no way to protect my equipment. I began to shoot quickly, fearing that my photo opportunity would be canceled by the rain. I could see it raining hard downtown but it looked as if the storm might blow west without completely soaking my location. Sure enough, after a fifteen minute light shower the rain stopped and the sun came back out. Things got steamy and the humidity was intense. I crossed the street to a parking structure and made my way to the second story. I found a perch protected by shade where I could watch the passing traffic from above. I rested there for a moment shooting cyclists, a rollerblader, busses and people using other modes of transportation. Once I had collected myself and stopped sweating, I packed up my things and headed south to my car. At first I was feeling gross and unsatisfied with the images I took but on further review I noticed a few that I am happy with. This was a good lesson in how the weather can affect your plans, making it slightly more difficult to relax and take thoughtful images.

1st YR Seminar – Blog Post #2

Time Tracker Findings

After filling out my time tracker for the previous week I noticed a few things. The first was that I work seven days a week. I also work on school-work seven days a week, which I guess is normal for students trying to work a full time job. The second thing I took a look at was my sleep schedule. I routinely go to bed around midnight and wake up at 6:00 am. This means I get an average of six hours of sleep per night. I should probably make it a priority to get more sleep if I want to have energy for the long days. I moved on to to see how I spend my recreational time and found that I skateboard for an hour and a half at least four times a week. That is a total of six hours a week I spend riding my skateboard. My leisure time was spent watching TV for at least two hours, mostly at night. One problem that I have identified and need to work on is my eating habits. I average two meals a day and one of them is usually pizza. When I am working or attending class, food seems to be an afterthought. I need to start packing a lunch the night before in order to save time, money, and eat healthier. This time tracker was an interesting exercise because it helped me to examine the areas of my life that could be more efficient. I think I will make better use of my time if I continue to catalogue the ways I choose to spend it.


These images represent various trips, memories, and good times. I chose them because they either feature someone special or remind me of fond memories in the last few years.

Cows, Digital Image, 4490px x 2993px, 2014
Gary and Wilson, Digital Image, 5760px x 3840px, 2015
Hummingbird, Digital Image, 4147px x 2917px, 2016
Hunter, Digital Image, 5760px x 3840px, 2016
Marcus, Digital Image, 4467px x 3388px, 2017
Tyler, 5582px x 3721px, 2016

Congress Photos Round II

Congress Photos Reflection II

During my latest adventure down to south Congress I continued to focus in on my theme of people in transit. I decided to shoot in the morning to see if I could catch a different variety of light and subject matter. As I walked further north I could hear a strange drum beat reverberating off the restaurants and shops. I couldn’t tell where it was coming from but I figured I would find out soon enough. The drumming was getting louder as I continued to walk and I could tell I was close to the origin of the sound. When I passed by Perla’s sea food restaurant I saw the culprit. A small shirtless, wild eyed man was playing a djembe drum. He said his name was Pound and he was out on congress every day providing music for people on their morning commute. Every one of these people in the photographs has a story and it is interesting to interact and observe them in their daily routine.

1st YR Seminar – Articles, Ted Talk, and Grit

Artists and Entrepreneurs Articles

1     What are the main points of each article?

The first article talks about artists and their increasing usefulness in the corporate work place. The second article draws similarities to artists and entrepreneurs, stating that they both groups have a similar spirit and excel at creative problem solving.

2     What can artists learn from their “entrepreneurial cousins”?

I think artists can learn to focus in on a single piece or aspect of their work or business in order to have it become a more successful operation.

3    Do you agree that artists are entrepreneurs? why?

Yes, many artists are entrepreneurs, they turn their craft or skill into a business. I think that takes a lot of self drive and the ability to take risks to follow your passion.

4     Which of the 12 characteristics of artists do you agree with?

I agree with all twelve of the proposed characteristics of artists. My favorite is Artists are comfortable with ambiguity. Artists are frequently faced with making decisions on how something looks or feels and these critiques are often not quantifiable.

5     What others would you add to the list?

I would add that Artists are willing to make mistakes and learn from them. Artists undaunted by adversity. Artists love a challenge.

6     Additional thoughts.

I think both articles were well written and very kind to current and future artists. Highlighting the way an artist thinks is not an easy task but I think they broke it down systematically and gave good evidence to prove their point.

Ted Talk and Grit Test

1     Do you have grit, or is this something you need to work on?

According to the grit test I’m grittier than 70% of the US. I think everyone could always use a little more grit in their life. I hate leaving things unfinished and I think that drives me to push and get projects finished.

2     List a couple of things you could do to increase your level of grit.

In order to increase my grit I should keep a better calendar. Make lists of long term and short term goals and make weekly checks to see if I’m hitting my marks.

Congress Photos Round I

Congress Photos Reflection I

When I made my way down to Congress between Oltorf and Cersar Chavez I noticed a major theme. Everyone was on the way somewhere commuting to work or school or just out for exercise. These people traveling and moving around each other made for interesting subject matter so I decided to see how many different photos I could take of that process. I hope to get more images for this same conceptual theme.