I’ve received a number of rather hostile messages regarding me calling myself “Film God”. Most of these messages have come from individuals who are upset about the use of the name of the Christian representation of the supreme being. I like to call these people “Narrow Minded Twits”. The reason I call them this is because it’s quite narrow minded to associate the use of a word or title with just ONE idea.
Let’s use peanut butter as an example- If I say “peanut butter” most people will automatically identify the term with a peanut butter and jelly sandwich but there are some people who will go a little bit outside the box and think of a candy bar or a protein shake. Some might even think of George Washington Carver or Dr. John Harvey Kellog but the point is that there are many different ideas that can go along with a single term.
Now, moving back to the use of the word “god”- let’s look at the Merriam-Webster definition:
capitalized : the supreme or ultimate reality: as
a: the Being perfect in power, wisdom, and goodness who is worshiped as creator and ruler of the universe
b: Christian Science : the incorporeal divine Principle ruling over all as eternal Spirit : infinite Mind
a: being or object believed to have more than natural attributes and powers and to require human worship; specifically : one controlling a particular aspect or part of reality
a: person or thing of supreme value
a: a powerful ruler
Wait… soooo you mean there is more than one way to define the word “god”!? Y-You mean it’s not just the name people use to identify the being that they worship?!
Like I’ve stated before, god is a title, not a name. Just like Jesus of Nazareth or Jesus “The Christ” …no “Christ” was NOT his last name. The actual name of the deity that is worshiped in the Christian (and many other) faiths is YHWH which, of course, isn’t actually a word in the English (or any other) language soooo there were a couple of extra letters and syllables added in to make Yahweh. Truth be told, no one really knows how to pronounce the “true” name of the Hebrew deity that many call God. There are many theories about the origin and true translation of God’s name but I will let you all research that for yourselves. Nowadays, people use the name “God” because they are ignorant to the true origin of the word.
Anyway, I identify myself with the idea that I have a photographic gift. That’s not to say that I am the best photographer in the world. No, I am just really good at what I do. Therefore, I am a god in my own right. Also, I identify with the idea that god is a consciousness and not a conscious being (and certainly not a conscious being who has two eyes, a nose and a mouth like we humans do in this third density reality we exist in). I believe that everything and every one is a part of the divine consciousness that is identified as “god” and therefore I AM GOD.
Now, I’m going back into the darkroom to make some more prints and I don’t want to hear any more complaints about my name!
During an e mail conversation with a friend the other day, I was told that some of my photographs might offend my “more conservative audience”.
My reply: “I do not have a ‘more conservative audience’. If my photographs offend anyone then it’s not my problem, it is theirs. What’s offensive about skin? About the human body in its most natural state? Should we all gasp at the sight of each other unclothed as if our bodies are something to be ashamed of? Nudity is not sex. Nor is sex in itself wrong in anyway. It’s society; the media, our governments and religions that have brainwashed us into identifying nudity with sexual taboos. Had we not been brought up that way, a shirtless woman walking down the street would offend no more than a shirtless man. Whats more is that we seem to be more offended by sex- the creation of life, the joining of two souls, and even in its most recreational sense, an act that’s no less normal than eating breakfast every morning, than death! Death is all around us and we have no problem with saturating our televisions and computer screens with it. Murder on the news, killings in action movies, violent video games, etc. It’s perfectly normal to go to war. To bomb cities and destroy life. To want our children to grow up and become “defenders of our nation”… killers. Parents can buy toy guns for their kids but are afraid to TALK with and TEACH their kids about sex. Afraid to teach their kids how they got here in the first place. But we must protect them from nudity… from sex. We censor our conversations and cover our bodies not in good taste. Not because of fashion or necessity but out of fear and shame. Then we end up with a generation who’s even worse off than the last because they’ve been brought up in an ass backwards world that glorifies death and demonizes life. A society that says it’s wrong to show too much skin. Not saying that there is anything wrong with violence and death. I love my guns and bloody video games! but where the hell is the balance!?”
I refuse to censor my art so that people who happen to stumble across it wont be offended. Offended by what? A NIPPLE!? Like we don’t all have them!? The only reason you deem nudity as pornographic or taboo is because you have been misinformed and brought up in a society rooted in fear… fear of what is still unclear to me.
I’m still waiting on someone to give me a valid reason or explanation as to why nudity is so offensive. Why are people are so ashamed of their own skin?
Edit: killedbyart said: It’s not the nudity that’s offensive, it’s the thoughts in our minds that the nudity invokes that really shame us. I think therein lies the reason for why some people are offended by nudity: it makes them feel ashamed of their own perversions.
Not that I have anything against tattoos but it’s ridiculously hard to sell prints in galleries or submit to magazines when a model has zodiac signs, paw prints and hello kitties all over their body.
If you are a woman in Atlanta who doesn’t have tattoos…
…you are a unicorn.
…Maybe not forever, but I’ll be gone for a while. People obviously don’t respect my work and that’s okay- I know that not everyone has common sense.
Anyway, I appreciate those of you who have supported my photography and followed me thus far. I’m not shutting down my page, just not posting any photos. Feel free to continue to ask me questions about photography (or whatever else you’d like to know) I may post more photos in the future.
Oh and to all of you who have cropped, edited, reposted or changed the source on my photos- you all have no idea what actually goes into the production of the photographs that you all are disrespecting.
I don’t do this for fun and I figured that the rest of the world would appreciate my work outside of physical prints in art galleries. From now on, if you want to see my work, you’ll have to wait for my next gallery showing. I’ll also be publishing my book later this year.
Goodnight Tumblr! ^_^
People reblog my photos and put their URL under them as if they had anything at all to do with the photos. What’s the point of that? Would someone like to fill me in?
Kids are back in school. That means that I get to listen to all of their ignorance as they walk home. I’m letting my dog loose on the next little twit that walks through my yard yelling rap lyrics with their pants at their knees. I can’t believe that these morons are our future. What’s the point of school nowadays, anyway!?
It’s been some time since I wrote about anything worth reading. After all, this IS a blog right? Well tonight, I came to the realization that I am who science fiction writers base their super villains off of. No, I don’t have a secret laboratory or any super powers. I don’t have a giant death ray or an army of evil minions. What I’ve got is a deep seeded hatred for society and the state of mankind. We live in a society where war is justified by words like “patriotism” and blood is spilled in the name of false idols and imaginary gods. Nicki Minaj and Yo Gotti are considered “good music” and your status in life is determined by the clothes you wear and the car you drive. People actually believe that world leaders are here to help us and that poverty only exists in those “save the children” commercials. I could go on and on but I’ve sure you get the picture. The word we live in is run by fools, liars, thieves, and murderers… and for some reason, the majority of us are okay with that as long as we are left alone to consume corporate waste, own our SUV’s, watch our reality TV, and work our 9-5 desk jobs. And when things go wrong, you look to Super Man, Batman, Spider Man… The police, military, politicians… God, Allah, etc. to swoop down and save the day. Anything to take the blame and responsibility off of yourselves. But what happens when they don’t answer. What happens when you realize that they, the “heroes” you’ve put your faith in don’t give a fuck? What happens when you wake up and realize that you are still human and that the man you laughed at for begging for change the other day is now starring you back in the mirror? Or that the war is no longer on CNN and FOX news, it’s in your back yard.
You see, the “villains” aren’t the bad guys. They are the people who see the world for the giant festering pile of media shit, corporate piss, and military waste that it is. Villains are the ones sick of being ignored and stepped on. Sick of watching people prosper at their expense. They are the little guy who is passionate about art. The “terrorist” willing to die for die for a REAL cause. The few who know that what everyone else thinks is freedom is just a big cage with pretty padded walls. I am a villain. I am the one the media want’s label the bad guy because I see the world beyond what they show you.
I used to ask myself, when reading comic books, why anyone would want to destroy the world. Why anyone would want to wipe out cities or burn entire populations to the ground. I see now. I’ve always known but wanted to see the good in the world. I wanted to believe that we could wake up and rebuild this place for the people and not for the greedy bastards we let make the rules for us. I often find myself waiting for the end of the world or the zombie apocalypse or whatever lies ahead… not for the imminent death and destruction, but for the chance to rebuild something better.
…And if I have to set the world on fire with my own two hands to make a better world for my daughter, I will. I am the villain and there isn’t a super hero, man, or god that will stand in my way.
When I contact someone for a shoot, I’m not looking for them to get all dolled up with a million different colors of eye shadow. I’d prefer if I didn’t have to ask you to move 20 layers of weave out of your face. It’d be nice if you didn’t bring your ENTIRE closet and all of yours and your friends shoes.
…seriously, I’m a simple photographer and I like my work to reflect that. When I contact you for a shoot, I seriously just want to photograph YOU! The shoot is about who YOU are and how beautiful you are without the aid of makeup and designer clothing. I am NOT a fashion, glam, or editorial photographer. I consider myself an ARTIST. that means that I do not care whats hip, trendy, or sexy…The reason I photograph women nude is because to be nude in front of a camera is to present ones self simply and exactly as she is. No added sweeteners, fillers, colors or preservatives. It requires complete confidence on the model’s part to allow the world to view her just as she is and I respect ANY woman, short, tall, black, white, skinny, fat- who thinks she is beautiful enough from head to toe to want to share herself with the world through art.
I contact women that I think are genuinely beautiful regardless of shape, skin tone, hair color, or anything else that the rest of society places so much emphasis on. If I contact you, don’t go ranting on about how you need to get your body back or you want to get better weave… if I thought you were anything less than perfect, I wouldn’t have bothered to ask to photograph you
Just wanted to put that out there. :-)
I’ve got a history of insomnia- Most people pull an all-nighter every now and then. Sometimes I’ll go couple of days without sleep. It’d be nice to wake up one morning and feel completely stress free but that’s like asking the sky to rain turtles -grabs umbrella- If I were to go down the list of things I’m stressed about, I’d be here for the next week or so. Just to put it simply, my level of stress in continuing to manifest itself so apparently in my life that it’s effecting my health. Trips to the ER, medications, going from doctor to doctor, etc. I used to say things like “by the time I’m 30 I’ll…”. I’m 23 now and some days I question whether or not I’ll make it to 30. Anyway, I watch a documentary on my favorite photographer, Helmut Newton, not long ago. Towards the end, the explained the story behind one of my favorite photographs of his; a self portrait of him in a hospital mirror after having a heart attack due to, you guessed it, stress. He had been stressing over a particular photo shoot- so much so that it almost cost him his life. I feel that I’ve arrived at that point and all too early. Photography has become who I am and I’ve grown to the point where it’s difficult for me to go anywhere without a camera for fear that I’ll miss that one moment- that one shot that will make me famous. I stress out over the hundreds of photos ideas I’ve got stored in my notebooks that I fear I’ll never get to create because I can’t find the right model or when I do she/he is unreliable and doesn’t call or show. I stress over of the lack of time I have to go photograph ANYTHING due to circumstances beyond my control and my having to spend almost ALL day EVERY day as a stay at home dad. I stress over equipment that I’ll never get to use. I stress that my work will only be appreciated after I’m dead.
I don’t see myself as a commercial photographer. I don’t want to be that guy who books hundreds of clients and is always busy sloshing through the bullshit of each day, photographing the mundane and lifeless. I want my work in galleries. I want people to appreciate my work as art, simple and plain. I want to tell stories through my photographs be they fictional or true. I wan’t each roll I shoot to be a one of a kind record of someone’s emotions, actions, pain, happiness, and everything in between. I want to document the world for what it is; war, death, sex, lust, greed, misery, love, color, science, religion, happiness, and nature. I stress because I feel like my creativity is locked in a cage, here in Atlanta, with people who are so consumed by their own bullshit and what other people think of them, in a society that has forgotten art, in a country where freedom is just code for “stay in your place.”
It took me years to get where I am now as a photographer and I’m sure it will take many more to get where I want to be. I don’t intend to ever settle on one style of photography nor do I ever want to get comfortable and think I’ve mastered anything. I’m well past my 10,000 hour mark and I plan on logging many more. I just hope I live long enough to be great.