Photos from HoopCamp 2012 can be found at this link.
10/14/12 Lake Huron, Michigan
los angeles, my eternal summerland, seems to have thinned my blood. the cold of michigan slows my movements, my thinking. i awake into heaviness, a strange illness, the dormancy of impending winter threatens to put me into a hibernation. my spine doesn’t receive the memo to cooperate until an hour after waking & even then there is twisting, pushing myself up in slow painful movements. soft beds are lumbar torture. child’s pose & stillness bring me to standing, caffeine to moving. where back at home, it is a quicker process. the warm sun beckons me outdoors in easier strokes. if i ever doubted that california was a good choice of home, michigan is the reminder. yet still, these are rare days. important to be reminded of seasons, that rain exists, that only thru diversity can gratitude emerge.
the people i’ve met here, they keep me warm. such instant love, comfort and acceptance. i’m really enjoying all the new friends i’ve made here at Sacred Circles. The smell of pancakes in the morning, vegan cookies, log cabins, huddled under shared umbrellas, the forest a bed of pine needles and bright swirling leaves. a large yurt with a circular sky light has been my sanctuary.
10/22/12 NYC to LA
horizon as astropop, the gradient between day and night. the further i get from nyc, the looser the grip. while on the road i bypass my needs. quiet recovery is top priority come dawn.
there is a familiar room i visit within myself when i’m shooting. intuitive focus, a vortex in a language i alone conjure & understand. my spine ignites, a divine possession takes over. i live in other people’s thoughts and feelings… and it is growing stronger.
chicago was an under-promoted pit stop between Michigan & NYC. downtime with Stefano, time spent with my cousin & some friends. warm autumn days, unpredictable weather. i threw leaves at the sky, rode the ferris wheel, celebrated a friend’s birthday, shot a quartet, met a 95lb woman that is a black belt, fell in love again with classical music. i slept on a firm bed in a home i am comfortable in and snuggled a kitty that i called ‘Pinball’ even though her name is Jelly.
My NYC office, Bethesda Terrace
more than ever, my clients are becoming my friends… & i love that. the thinned veil, the deeper connections, watching their families & their businesses grow, all of this means we get to swirl around each other long after the shoot.
ali luminescent is the latest crossover to stir me. we walked in williamsburg at 1am in the rain, her stilts expertly balanced on the handles of her bicycle, adorned in circus embellishments, her hair & eyes glitter-kissed & radiant. i felt safe with her… as if she belongs everywhere and is never in danger. a passing stranger recognized her from winning a mermaid costume event and she humbly smiled at him. i could just watch her with popcorn, like a movie i never want to end. we had come from phoenix’s apartment, where they dangled upside down on a lyra under the watchful eyes of a dog named ‘spirit’. mugwort smoke curled in the air and i was silently in awe of these circus vixens, wishing they were my friends when i lived in nyc those many years ago…. perhaps i wouldn’t have left, if i had found people that reflected the river i was craving…
at night i would return late to daniel and shien’s apartment, a fancy new building right on the water in williamsburg brooklyn. we sat on the rug and played with the ever-shedding & talkative kitty named violeta, whom i also called ‘pinball’. daniel has a thriving video business. we were goths together 20 years ago. evenings dressed in black lace & black lipstick at the Bat Cave in Manhattan, roadtrips to Salem Massachusetts, witchy photos at magickal places. that we are both doing what we loved back then makes me happy. “Yay us!” i said walking down his expansive hallway. he gave me an old camera for my growing collection…
another highlight from my time in nyc was skipping thru the streets with Brian Viglione from The Dresden Dolls after indian food, a bottle of wine hidden in his coat. we still have such a good time together, without the shows, without my camera. grateful we have remained friends in this way…
a full day of non-stop studio shoots at the house of yes wrecked me. paired with another sleep deprived evening brings me to today, a morning of shooting a dancer wearing antlers in fort greene park and a mad rush to the airport. a suitcase with a busted lock, rude TSA people, flight delays, screaming babies, crowds of oblivious and impatient people, i crumbled and sat in the corner with my bear hood over my tearful face, throwing daggers at the city outside the window…
A field of hoopers in golden light. An echoing voice repeating the word “OPEN!” Ascending energy, rapid. Bunkbeds with new friends, a slumber party. The friendliest people I have yet to meet. Many encouraged me to set my camera aside & pick up a hoop. I just might. This group of people make me feel invinsible, welcome, encouraged…open.
Coffee warm in my hand, squinting at the rising sun through still goliaths, rushing water, birdsong. This morning I rolled out from a bunkbed and into a new day with the kindest people. Heartfelt “Good Morning”s as we gathered like fireflies in the middle of the forest for a 7am yoga class. Sun salutations brought awe as I stretched up and back, taking in the towering redwood trees against the changing sky. These trees are wise protectors, old as time. Soon the familiar body buzz of a deeper place opened up inside me. I am with like-minded empowered people. I feel stronger here in the forest, limitless….