Drowning in Photographs

tamales.jpg

I photographed a woman making tamales. Put down a banana leaf. Slap on some corn dough. Add some sauce and rice, chicken, potatoes and beans. Wrap it up. Done.

Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat. Tamale. Tamale. Tamale. Tamale.

Sounds a lot like my photo workflow. Same thing over and over.

But lately I’m taking and processing way too much corn and dough. I should be spending time creating better recipes and tastier dishes.

Tag. Caption. Keyword, Rate. Copy. Upload. Burn.

My workflow is getting in the way of my creative side.

I’m spending so much time key-wording and archiving my photographs that I don’t have time to show them off properly.

Must find balance.

Anyone can make a tamale. I want lobster, truffles, and carne asada. At least when it comes to photographs.

YFZ Revisited – April 18, 2008 – The End

4.18.2008 2664A.jpg

More photos of reaction to Judge Barbara Walther’s decision to keep over 400 FLDS children in CPS custody. It was a somber parade. I will let the photos speak for themselves.

4.18.2008 2708A.jpg
4.18.2008 2715.jpg
4.18.2008 2725.jpg
4.18.2008 2737.jpg
4.18.2008 2766.jpg
4.18.2008 2772.jpg
4.18.2008 27921.jpg
4.18.2008 28071.jpg
4.18.2008 28131.jpg
4.18.2008 28161.jpg
4.18.2008 2849.jpg

This is the end of my YFZ Revisited series. Thank you for following it through. I will likely post more photos from Texas and the events of late April, May, June, July, etc. But it won’t be every day.

YFZ Revisited – April 18, 2008 – The Decision

4.18.2008 2593A.jpg

At the end of the second day, Judge Barbara Walther made her decision. Over 400 FLDS children would remain in CPS custody. The FLDS began to come out of the Tom Green County Courthouse, and I was looking for reaction. Since they weren’t talking, I was looking for body language to show their emotions. We’ll go in chronological order.

4.18.2008 2611.jpg

These three ladies were next to come out.

4.18.2008 2625A.jpg

I stayed focused on them as they slowly walked down the steps.

4.18.2008 2642.jpg

They walked right past me.

4.18.2008 2809.jpg

And then they were caught in the media pack.

4.18.2008 2812.jpg

I followed from behind.

4.18.2008 2815.jpg

For just a little while and then ran back to look for other people.

4.18.2008 2819.jpg

YFZ Revisited – April 18, 2008 – Wading In

4.18.2008 2776.jpg

Only just now did I find this frame and it’s now one of my favorites. Symbolically, I think of someone wading into the surf at oceanside. (The media is the surf.) And thanks to college photographer of the year Tim Hussin for adding so much drama as he runs toward the shot with his camera swinging wide. The more I look at it the more I look at it. Here’s the entire sequence.

4.18.2008 2589.jpg

So I’m guessing that the woman at right is a CPS escort, accompanying these two women to the courthouse and then back to the shelter where their children are being held.

4.18.2008 2590.jpg

After my favorite shot up top, this is where we pick up.

4.18.2008 2777.jpg

The FLDS woman wades into the surf…

4.18.2008 2778.jpg

The cameras part…

4.18.2008 2779.jpg

Everyone looking for a comment of any kind…

4.18.2008 2780.jpg

I don’t think there was one…

4.18.2008 2781.jpg
4.18.2008 2782.jpg
4.18.2008 2784.jpg
4.18.2008 2786.jpg

YFZ Revisited – April 18, 2008 – Walking In

4.18.2008 2470.jpg

I worked this angle a lot, trying to get people and the columns of the Tom Green County Courthouse but I never got a shot as nice as some of the other photographers. The lighting at this moment was too harsh. There were some great photographers covering the hearing who produced amazing, artistic work. I think I left the artistic style behind and went more with a straight documentary approach, looking for content and moments. It’s a constant struggle for me, deciding between the two approaches.

4.18.2008 2692.jpg

Judge Barbara Walther arrived under heavy security, entering through the back door of the building.

4.18.2008 2707.jpg
4.18.2008 2682.jpg
4.18.2008 2753.jpg

Sam Brower, Brent Jeffs.

4.18.2008 2741A.jpg

This was an interesting moment.

4.18.2008 2748A.jpg
4.18.2008 2500.jpg

And when these ladies walked up, it seemed like more of the same. Until I looked closer:

4.18.2008 2765A.jpg

Some kind of tag on their arm. These women must have been staying with their children in state custody and had been given the wristband as some kind of ID.

4.18.2008 2765A copy.jpg

YFZ Revisited – April 17, 2008 – Lunch Break and Beyond

4.17.2008 2260.jpg

At one point this group exited the courthouse and headed toward City Hall, where a simulcast of the hearing was being broadcast.

4.17.2008 2463.jpg

They were quickly swarmed by cameras. It’s amazing how interesting people walking down the sidewalk can be at a big news story.

4.17.2008 2465.jpg

They came to the end of the block and waited at the crosswalk for the light to change.

4.17.2008 2468.jpg

Notice the smart tactic of the two women standing behind the group. Looking through the photos now, I’m noticing that those two would often walk in the “second row,” behind other FLDS women. Because of this, most of the TV cameras seemed to miss them.

4.17.2008 2470.jpg

I’m sure reporters were asking questions during all this, but no one said anything.

4.17.2008 2473.jpg

I circled around.

4.17.2008 2476.jpg

More questions being asked…

4.17.2008 2479.jpg

…Still no answers.

4.17.2008 2505.jpg

I went into City Hall for a while and listened to what was going on. With over four hundred attorneys, it was a complete circus (and I’m not talking about any decisions being made, it was a circus procedurally). Every minute seemed to being a new objection from one lawyer or another. I could tell we were going to be here for quite a while.

4.17.2008 2333A.jpg

I took this photograph back at the courthouse, when I realized that it was dark and I’d been outside the courthouse for twelve straight hours. The attorneys in the courtroom were taking a break, and shortly after this shot they recessed for the night. The hearing would continue bright and early the next day.

YFZ Revisited – April 17, 2008 – Hearing Begins

4.17.2008 2070.jpg

Officers outside the Tom Green County Courthouse to provide security for the mandatory 14-day custody hearing for over 400 children removed from the FLDS Church’s YFZ Ranch.

4.17.2008 2307.jpg

People began arriving pretty early. I had met this woman the day before when we poked our heads into her SUV. She stood outside the courthouse for a brief moment while the man she walked in with (her attorney?) talked with some reporters.

4.17.2008 2090.jpg

Two very different emotions in the photo above and the one below, considering that she would either have her kids returned or kept in custody in the hearing to follow.

4.17.2008 2097.jpg
4.17.2008 2128.jpg

In walk the attorneys for the FLDS: Rod Parker, “spokesman” Willie Jessop, Richard Wright, Bruce Griffen (he’s back there somewhere).

4.17.2008 2151.jpg

I love the look on her face after wading through the media, who gathered in a pack at this entryway. Doesn’t she look calm in contrast to their frenzy?

4.17.2008 2156.jpg
4.17.2008 2314.jpg
4.17.2008 2388.jpg

Out of the 400+ attorneys who came to the hearing to represent all sides, Susan Hays was the only one who stopped to talk. She became a regular fixture in news reports on the case. If she was a cartoon character, her catchphrase would be, “I won’t talk about my client.”

4.17.2008 2195.jpg
4.17.2008 2169.jpg

The line began to form outside the courthouse, and pretty soon it stretched halfway across the block.

4.17.2008 2436.jpg

Taking a Short Break

No YFZ post today. I’m going to take the day off before putting another one up.

A couple things-

1. Please keep the comments civil. I welcome a very wide range of conversation here. But you should be able to make your points without insulting other commenters. Of course, insulting me is always acceptable.

2. My photographic record of the YFZ raid was not made to and is not presented to push a pro-FLDS or an anti-FLDS agenda. I did my best to provide an objective view of events as they unfolded around me.

I am posting this wider edit to take you into the events as they happened. It is not the whole story of the YFZ raid. To gain a good understanding of any news event, especially one this big, you should try to get your coverage from a variety of sources. That’s how you will form an educated opinion.

In addition, the YFZ story continues to unfold. What you thought on day one of the story may not be what you think at the end.

The next YFZ post will jump forward into coverage of the mandatory 14-Day Hearing which featured over 400 lawyers and lasted two days, ending with Judge Walther ruling to keep the FLDS children in CPS custody.

  • 1
  • 2
Close Menu