I've been a fan of National Geographic photographer Nick Nichols for a while, you gotta admire anyone that has had malaria as many times as he has. A while back I was watching an NGS documentary where it mentioned that he lived in Charlottesville, Virginia. I remember my first thought was he could live anywhere in the world, why there? Well this past weekend, I went down there and found out.
What started off as a slideshow in his backyard has become a full blown festival in Charlottesville this year. Aptly named the "Festival of the Photograph," it was billed as being a 3 day celebration of "peace, love, and photography" - my interpretation was a Woodstock for photography, but with more hygiene.
Throughout downtown, there were galleries of various photographers. My favorite was probably William Albert Allard's:
There was also an area called YourSpace where anyone could exhibit their work. You can tell they worked hard to make the festival about everyone not just the big names in photography.
Downtown Charlottesville has a beautiful promenade (doesn't look like much here though) and there were large format prints of Nick Nichol's work hanging throughout.
Friday night, there was a slideshow/party at an abandoned warehouse. The setting was perfect and nicely accented with lightning lighting up the sky in the distance. I wish I had my camera with me that night, this is a shot from when I came back the next day to pick up my car. I was worried that it would be closed off but it was open and there was even a dance company in there practicing.
The legendary Eugene Richards at the Paramount Theater:
The crowd waiting for Eugene Richards to speak:
Live music and dancing at the Charlottesville Pavilion before the "Works" presentation, which showcased new photos from some of the top names in photography. Some of the stuff just blew me away.
Photographers being the hippies we are, many preferred the lawn to the chairs under the tent:
This guy preferred the sidewalk, comfort clearly isn't his thing as he was also lugging around an 8x10 (to the right, outside the shot):
Sam Abell greeting fans after his presentation. Quiet photos, loud applause:
David Alan Harvey looks up at his slideshow after coming down from the stage. He was showing his new work on hip hop:
After the sideshows at the Charlottesville Pavilion, there was a party at a building on the other side of the bridge near the pavilion. Here is Andy Levin adjusting his makeshift photographer's scarf. Or at least I hope it was makeshift.
At the "The Bridge" was a slideshow showcasing the works of Lightstalkers. In the foreground is Lance Rosenfield and Anna Maria Barry-Jester.
All in all I thought it was a great experience and definitely inspiring.