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Fundraiser Print Shop For Sara Beth Richards

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Hi everyone! If you could take a moment to read this, and share if you can, it’d be much appreciated. One of my lovely friends, Sara Beth Richards, has long-struggled with PCOS and endometriosis. After seeing doctors for years, and after experiencing “over 100 ultrasounds, MRIs, etc.”, she finally got to see a new specialist, only to discover that her right ovary has been completely covered in “Chocolate Cysts”, giving it 0% function, and her left ovary has several cysts as well, though there is still a slim chance at function if immediately treated.

She is now scheduled for a surgery on November 4th. However, her insurance coverage requires a really high deductible before they will pay, and she is looking at up to $6500 in out-of-pocket expenses.  Sara Beth is an Army National Guard veteran currently going to school full-time and is working with a bartender’s income.

One of her friends is doing a Perfectly Posh (pampering products) fundraiser, and I’d like to offer a special art print gallery, with images below, where 100% of the profits will go to Sara Beth to help her with her medical costs.  The ‘Americana’ themed images are from a shoot I did of Sara Beth in 2011, and I threw in a few landscape shots for good measure!

If you’d like to donate directly to Sara Beth, her PayPal is sara-hay (at) live.com.  Thank you very much for reading this!

Here are the available prints, just click to be taken to the shopping cart! (New prints are added at the top!):

 

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Waikiki Wandering

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Black fish in the water at Turtle Canyon

Something has changed in me over the last few months. Despite growing up as an outdoorsy-kid gallivanting all over Maui – hiking, snorkeling, body surfing, exploring in general – I’ve spent most of my 20s cooped up inside, sitting in front of my computer. However, a few months ago, I started to get this feeling like I needed to get outside and jump in the ocean. Of course I’ve been to the beach plenty of times in my life, but it was never really a part of my adult lifestyle, mostly due to constantly having a camera in my bag that I did not want to leave alone on the sand while I was in the water. Combined with my eyes getting worse and being prone to infection with my contact lenses, I rarely swam anymore…until now. I haven’t regularly exercised since I was in the 8th grade, and the older I get, the harder it is to stay in some semblance of good shape, and I guess my body had enough of it, because I could feel it craving the ocean.

I’ve also been shooting for 2Chillies Swimwear for nearly a year now, and since I started being around the ocean for our photo shoots at least once a month, I finally invested in an Outex underwater housing for my camera. I have so many awesome friends who are underwater and surf photography experts who basically live in the ocean, and I’m really happy I can finally go out to play with them!

Photo of me courtesy of Shannon Cummings of Memories Aquatic!

Photo of me with my Outex housing courtesy of Shannon Cummings of Memories Aquatic!

And play truly is the key word. In any passion-turned-business, you run the risk of burning yourself out on it, and I have to be really careful about photography. Of course I’ll always love it, but I’ve recently been so focused on shooting for work purposes that I find myself uninspired to go out and shoot for myself – to play, experiment, and have fun with it again. Business has been great, but my personal work has been suffering, so forcing myself into a new environment where I’m almost learning from scratch, combined with legitimate exercise, has been amazing for my mental health and spirit.

So that explains my recent foray into the world of underwater photography, but let’s get to the actual purpose of this post – Waikiki Wednesdays! Since Hawaii’s weather has been really bipolar so far this year, I’ve taken to trying to get out and into the ocean on any sunny day I can. My lovely friend Lauren, who kind of does everything  – dancer, model, designer, sailor, stylist, makeup-artist, businesswoman – is also the manager of 2Chillies Swimwear Waikiki, so she’s been the most amazing producer for our shoots over the last year, and also happens to be super fun to hang out with. She happens to have Wednesday mornings off, so I texted her if she wanted to go adventuring with me yesterday, and off we went!

So, first off, we managed to get ourselves aboard a boat sailing out to Turtle Canyon off the coast of Waikiki for some snorkeling. Unfortunately, the water clarity was pretty awful (likely do to the recent south swell we’ve been having), so I only managed to get a few decent photos. Through the murky water, I could see gigantic sea turtles wandering around the ocean floor, so I can’t wait to go back again sometime in better conditions!  After we got back out of the water, the boat sailed around for a bit before heading back to shore. Lauren and I had lunch, then went while she went back to work, I ended up wandering around Waikiki on a solo photo walk for the rest of the day. It’s been ages since I was just shooting for the sake of shooting, and I hope you all enjoy the images I came up with, which are so very me in aesthetic that it was incredibly therapeutic to just shoot what I wanted the way I wanted to.

Sailing past a surfer.

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What I Know About Hawaii State Film Permitting (As of December 2013)

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Taken from the jetty at the far end of Fort DeRussy Beach, so I *think* it counts as "Waikiki Beach (ONLY from beach fronting “Hilton helipad”through Fort DeRussy Beach)" as stated on the Oahu Open & Accessible Sites...

Taken a few days ago from the jetty at the far end of Fort DeRussy Beach, so I *think* it counts as “Waikiki Beach (ONLY from beach fronting “Hilton helipad”through Fort DeRussy Beach)” as stated on the Oahu Open & Accessible Sites…

Disclaimer: What I state here is just my understanding of the situation that has resulted in my current insurance being approved of by the Hawaii State Film Office, as of December 16th, 2013.  However, as I am not affiliated in any official capacity with the State, so I cannot guarantee everything I say is 100% accurate, and the State may change things in the future. Please comment and let me know if I’ve said anything explicitly inaccurate and I will do my best to amend it. 

Okay.

This has taken a while, but I believe I’ve finally got all my ducks in a row with the stressful and confusing requirements implemented by the State of Hawaii for being eligible to receive a film permit, which is required for all commercial photography taking place on State property – including scenic landscapes you intend to sell as art prints.  Don’t get me wrong – there are a lot of things about the legislation that I absolutely do not agree with, but in the interest of professionalism, I’ve been working to get myself into their new online film permit application database, which in itself is a great improvement to the complicated system, and have finally successfully done so after addressing the controversial Automobile Liability requirement that they attempted to implement for the Annual Permit Application a couple of years ago.

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