Friends

Friends

Friends - 2009

I promised Pat Coakley my next post would be something a little nicer, after the spooky “Green Ghoul” posted for Halloween.

These two women were clearly friends, and I hope their friendship and humanity come through.

For the Ghouls and Goblins

green-creature

Green Ghoul -- 2009

A creature was lying on the beach, dead and half covered with sand and dried seagrass. I tried to breathe some life into him and he opened his eyes and looked at me sadly. Or was that just a dream?

A bit further on was the shell of a sailboat — someone’s home — that had blown ashore. Holed by the coral stone at the water’s edge, its bones had been picked clean by human vultures in search of anything of value. As the waves washed over it’s keel, I shuddered with the old boater’s fear in the night of losing one’s bearings, or of the anchor losing its grip on the bottom, and being shipwrecked on a reef or a rocky shore. Here was proof that it happens.

Blown ashore - 2009

Blown Ashore - 2009

Made on Sight!

Made on Sight - 2009

Made on Sight - 2009

We all see funny signs from time to time. Sometimes they are obvious errors, but this one made me wonder if they really mean what they say — that they won’t start cooking that omelet until they see the whites of your eyes! I guess that would be better than yesterday’s or last week’s omelet.

On a different subject, but still having fun, the neighbors had a problem with swarming bees the other day (not an infrequent occurrence here). They called the “bee-man” — a rasta fellow who knows what to do. He looked so strange on the rooftop after he donned all his gear.

Battle of the Bee-men - 2009

Battle of the Bee-men - 2009

The Modern Butcher

The Butcher - 2009

The Butcher - 2009

I was slinking around the local warehouse food store with the camera the other day, and got this moody picture of the butcher, alone in his glass-enclosed cage. The image is a more recent extension of some of the work I did last month in preparation for an exhibit in Frederiksted.

The camera sees the colors of light so much more acutely than the eye. While we all know that retailers make the meat look redder with a little red in the light, it’s normally not so obvious. The two different qualities of light here – in the work room and on the counter – help deliver the message in this image.

The “Daily Strife” exhibit at the Caribbean Museum Center for the Arts opens Friday night, October 16. Six of my images were chosen to be part of the exhibit, including the one on the promotional flyer below. The show will be up until December 1, so stop in if you are on island.

daily-strife

The ubiquitous mobile device

Making Contact - 2009

Making Contact - 2009

Mobile devices (what we used to call cell phones) seem to be everywhere and sometimes may isolate us as much as bring us together. The image above from San Juan, Puerto Rico, will be part of an exhibition at the Caribbean Museum Center for the Arts titled “Daily Strife” (opening on October 16). The exhibit commemorates Virgin Islands – Puerto Rico Friendship Day, and its theme is our common experiences and responses to the chaos and rapid change of modern life.

While mulling over the theme of the exhibition, I saw the woman below — a cruise ship tourist — studying her mobile device while walking through the grounds of the historic fort in Frederiksted. She hurried out to where the cannons were placed so she could have her picture taken with the ship in the background. I wondered if she even saw the fort.

Doppelganger - 2009

Doppelganger - 2009

Per Ankh Performance

Per Ankh Performer - 2009

Per Ankh Performer - 2009

A local group called the Per Ankh Institute puts on cultural heritage drumming and dancing performances. This woman is one of the performers. Her regal posture and smile, and her instrument covered with hundreds of cowrie shells all spoke of pride in her heritage.

The occasion was the arrival of a cruise ship, and the image below shows some of the watchers. The tall woman in white with the camera is one of the Per Ankh troupe. The young girl sitting next to her is a local resident. The others are a few of the cruise ship passengers taking a short break in the shade of the palms to be entertained.

The Watchers - 2009

The Watchers - 2009

Carbon Seam and Palm Lights

Carbon Seam - 2009

Carbon Seam - 2009

The dead trunk of a palm plant washed up on the shore. At one end was the tangle of roots joined to the base of the trunk. At the other, the spiraled remains of where the living palm fronds had been attached subtly tailed off into fibrous strands. These two semi-abstracts are interpretations of each end of this single object that had washed ashore.

Palm Lights  - 2009

Palm Lights - 2009

Not from here?

Visitation - 2009

Visitation - 2009

I thought this was a good image to follow the “feral feline” in the previous post. The woman was giving me a similar look, like if I stepped another foot closer, she’d bolt. Good they are taking comfort in the familiarity of a waffle cone and sweet ice cream.

I don’t recognize this couple. Likely tourists. There are always clues, some of which are unique to each locale. In this case, the man’s socks (to match the shirt, no less) with shorts and sandals stand out. Unusual here, but he probably can’t imagine not wearing them. How do you identify tourists in your hometown?

Feral Feline

Feral Feline -- 2009

Feral Feline -- 2009

St. Croix is overrun with feral cats, despite the best efforts of several local non-profits to neuter as many as possible. Part of this cat’s territory is a little-used courtyard in downtown Christiansted. This is not the look of a kitty that wants to be petted. In fact, he clearly wanted me OUT of his territory! If he were ten pounds heavier, I’d have been more fearful than he was.

Bottled Sunlight Mixed with a Gentle Rain

Grapefruit - 2009

Grapefruit - 2009

Every July the local botanical garden sponsors the “Mango Melee” — a county fair-like event featuring dozens of varieties of local mangoes and other locally grown tropical fruit. This little pile of grapefruit was accented with one pink and one yellow fruit cut open to display the richly colored and textured interiors. If you could bottle sunlight mixed with a gentle rain, it might look like this.

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