Friday, April 4, 2008


Now is the time to edit the photographs. I printed out contact sheets cut them up and started to match them up that way. It was a very long process but it was worth it. I am doing 25 diptych photographs. I am comparing the city of the living compared to the city of the dead. It was very interesting to see the similarities between the two. You don’t really think about it until you put the images side by side. To see the similarities are just amazing. I was really getting stressed out thinking about how I was going to get 25 images done but when you have 300 images looking you in the face, it was still a challenging.

Sunday March 30, 2008

Today we went home for five of us. The others had to take another plane because our flight was late coming in so we missed our connecting flight. There was five seats available and the first five that were at the counter got them. My self was one of those five.


Saturday March 29, 2008

Today was pretty much the last day to shoot, and guess what it was cloudy. What a day to shoot.. Caitlin, Antonio, and Kiss went out to St. Louis Cemetery. Then we walked back to the hotel were we meet another group. We got into the van and went to St. Roch Cemetery with Jess, Maria, Jodie, Caitlin, Brett, and Jorie It was very interesting because there was a working digging up a grave for a funeral on Sunday. We got to see what the pebble stone crypts look like. It was just a normal wooden box.
Once we were done with the cemetery we went to the tree planting ceremony. I got more houses and some lunch.
While Caitlin and myself were walking up the street a gentlemen came up to us and told us that this neighbor hood has the highest murder rate in the city, and then followed that comment with and I quote "But what beautiful place to die." Well taking that all in we decided to stay there another hour, just kidding we pretty much went back to the group and voiced our opinion that it was time to go. After that neighbor hood we took a ride over to the 9th Ward. We were literally feet away from were the levees broke. It was pretty intense. To see a open field where hundreds of houses once stood was just I don't even know if I could put into words how it made you feel. Caitlin and I walked around this non-existing neighbor hood photographing houses and empty lots. It started to rain out so we started back to the van.
We got back to the hotel and went to dinner.
Then it was Bourbon Street time.

Friday March 28, 2008

This morning we got up and went around to a few more cemeteries, along with a few more houses. We had to get back because we were all going to meet up for lunch as a group.
Lunch was at Audoban Park, it was a picnic we stopped at Wal-Mart and picked up lunchmeat and cheeses, I myself bought a deli sandwich, and after lunch Stephanie, Brittany and I ventured off and went around taking pictures of houses.
When we got back to the hotel Brittany and I went swimming. It was a very relaxing afternoon. While in the Stephanie, Amanda, and Emily informed Brittany and myself that they were going to go shopping. So we got out of the pool and tagged along.
Dinner was at Juan's Flying Burrito a group of us all went. It was funny because no one told my group that they were going and so Jess, Brittany, Caitlin, and Amanda and myself all walked to the restaurant from the hotel. We called our teacher to make sure that we were walking the right way and he told us that there was a group waiting for a table already. So they add five people to the total and we finished walking. This burrito was the best burrito I have ever had it was like Chipotle but 10x better. After dinner we got back to the hotel and I looked through my images up in Brittany, Caitlin, Stephanie and Amanda's room.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Thursday March 27, 2008

Today we woke up at 8:30am and took the street car all the way up to the end of the track. At the end of the track is four or five cemeteries. We went to Cypress Cemetery, St. Patrick Cemetery #2. By the time that we finished those 2 cemeteries and decided to head out and grab some lunch, were we meet up with Jodie and Maria. We then went back to the hotel and edited my images right before we had the critique. The critique was a one on one with Brett our teacher.

After the critique four of us went out to dinner.

Wednesday March 26, 2008

Today was another shooting day; along with another tour this one was from the Lafayette Cemetery No. 1. This tour started at 10:30am and is only given on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays. It was a very interesting tour; there was a lot of history in that cemetery. Such as the grave of Hugh Grant haha that was a joke they told us, and we also saw the grave were a famous case Plessey vs. Ferguson, well we saw were Ferguson is buried. It was interesting because yesterday we saw were Plessey was buried. Plessey is buried in St. Louis Cemetery.
After the tour Caitlin and I went and photographed the cemetery on our own for about an hour. We then left the cemetery and caught the street car back down to Canal Street were we had lunch and took the other street car up to the another couple of cemeteries.
We walked around at least two or three more cemeteries when we were dropped off. We then photographed for about an hour and hoped back on to the street car and went back to the hotel where we uploaded our images and did a very informal critique but had a great amount of feed back.
Once done with that a group of us went to dinner at Big Al’s Seafood, were I tried a fresh oyster,
a boiled crawfish and my dinner which was fried crab fingers. I have to say that the crawfish and the fingers were not the best thing that I had ever had and would probably not get it again. The crab fingers were like the claw end but just the meat. I would not recommend it. The oyster was good it just slid right down the back of your throat.

After dinner Brittany and I went and sat in the pool for about an hour or so. The pool is so nice it is heated and very relaxing and that is just what I needed after shooting for five hours today my face got a lot of sun. It feels so good to be in nice sunny degree weather.

Tuesday March 25, 2008

Today was the first actual days of shooting, it all started off with the wake up call at 7:30am. After getting ready I went down to get the free breakfast, however we realized that we were running late for the tour at 9am since we had to walk to the tour bus. So we ate our breakfast on the run.
We arrived at the tour with 15 minutes to spare; the tour was the St. Louis Cemetery, it holds the three graves of the Voodoo Queen of New Orleans. It was really interesting to understand the superstition of the grave. Apparently you draw three X’s on the face plate, knock three times, turn around, tap with your foot a couple times and then leave an offering such as a cigarette, cigar, alcohol, and or pennies. We walked around there for a couple of hours shooting.
After getting back to the hotel, the whole group went and talked to the curator of an art museum where he gave us a behind the scene tour. He showed us images from many famous photographers some at which had never been printed before, such as Eggleston, Walker Evans and a few others.
While walking back to hotel a few of us decided to go out to Bourbon Street and get some lunch. Where for the first time I had Alligator, it was really good; it was kind of tough at some parts but it extremely good. The restaurant was called La Bayou I also got a drink called a Hurricane, and I also got to keep the glass! ha. Where after that we meet up with a guy named “Kiss” he was a friend of Caitlin.
After our critique a group of us went out and experienced New Orleans on Bourbon Street. Partying down there on Bourbon Street was an unbelievable time.

Monday March 24, 2008

Today was the first day of the New Orleans trip. It started with an alarm going off at 2:30am. We had to be at the airport at 4am because we flew out at 6am. We arrived in Dallas at 8am and after a 2 hour layover we flew on to New Orleans. Once we landed at 11:20am we picked up the rental cars and headed off to the hotel.
The hotel is something you really cannot explain it is just beautiful, the room that myself and Anthony have I would say at least 20 foot ceilings. And a wall that is part brick and part stucco. Once we all got settled in I went to lunch, I went to lunch with Brittany, Stephanie and Amanda. We went to Gordon Biersch; it was a brewery that was a couple of blocks away. After lunch the 16 of us went on a tour of New Orleans.
It was a two hour tour that took us around and showed us were the levees broke and where they were repaired. The tour took us around to the Ninth Ward, and the other parts of the town that were impacted by the flood. The images below are from that time. I was shooting in the bus through the windows. It was okay until I say a house that had a 1 in the bottom of the X, and what that means is that there as body found in the house. That was when it really got to me. Once the tour was over we all came back and had a break.
Brittany and I laid out by the pool, since it is heated pool it really felt good. All we did was put our feet in the water laid back. There was always a water fountain when made it very relaxing. We all went and had dinner at two different restaurants one group went to Bulldogs while the other one went to Nacho Mamas. It was a lot of fun I had probably the best Bloody Mary I had ever had. They used real horseradish and topped it off with green beans. It was a very exhausting day and I can not wait to see what the rest of the week brings.
Tomorrow a group of us are going on a tour of St. Louis Cemetery at 9am. This is when I am going to start my series and will upload tomorrow.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Damaged Grave Sites

There were many things that were damaged when Hurricane Katrina hit New Orleans and the levees broke. House’s, jobs, lives were destroyed. Many families lost other family members, and for many the search is not over. There are many families in New Orleans that came back to find there already deceased family members not where they should be. When the levees broke it destroyed and damaged many grave sites in numerous cemeteries throughout New Orleans.
What I want to photograph is the mausoleums and grave sites that have been damaged. Over the pass week or so I have been calling cemeteries and talking to the care takers. I have been asking if they would be willing to tell me their side of the story and let me photograph them as well as photograph the grave sites. My plan is to interview them and ask questions such as “What is the cemetery doing to fix the damaged sites?” “What is the city doing to help you fix the grave sites and get the bodies back to their original resting place?” “Or is it simply the families’ responsibility to get this handled?” Now these questions are not the only questions that I am going to ask and I am not even sure if these are the right questions that I should be asking. But I am going to brainstorm some different questions so I have a couple of ways to go with this project.
I have talked to St. Roch Cemetery and I talked to the care taker there named Jack. He was really nice telling me that the famous arm and leg had been damaged. He also told me that the cemetery has a lot of damaged grave sites and mausoleums. After talking to Jack at the St. Roch Cemetery I called New Orleans Archdiocesan Cemetery where I talked to a Jody. He was another caretaker who seemed more than welling to help me out. He told me that at that cemetery there was not much damage done. He told me that pretty much all that was there were water lines. Which when he told me that I thought that would be a good tie into the end of the story, something to the effect that not everything was damaged because of the levees braking.

Saturday, February 16, 2008


Caitlin and my self have called two cementeries and have full permission to photograph. We also have permission to get things unlocked that is not normally open to the public. Each of the caretakers are willing to let Caitlin and my self interview them as well as photograph them.
Caitlin booked a tour at one of the cementeries to see where the Voo Doo Queen of New Orleans is located. That tour will be March 25th at 9:00am.