Archive for November, 2010

R.I.P Good TV: Family Matters

Posted: November 30, 2010 in Video
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I was
nine and I can always remember a late August day with the feel of
fall breathing down summer’s neck. The street lights are starting
to slowly warm up to light up the incoming night. I’m speeding up
and down the street like a chicken with his head cut off, trying my
best not to get caught. That’s when I hear a voice shouting my name
in the area of the building where I lived. Just as the kid that is
“it” closes in on me to switch the chasing responsibility to me I
say to him, “I have to go home.” The disappointment on his face
gives me a satisfaction only a villain can love. I head home and
speed up the stairs like I was flying. As I enter the door I see my two
sisters sitting on the couch with a concentration only a good
program can provide. I turn towards the TV and start to yell, “Oh,
its…” Before I could finish my sentence my sisters interrupt me
with a, “Shh, be quiet!” So I just sit down and soak it all in.
Family Matters was a program that carried on a tradition of black
family values and love. It gave children like me and my sisters a
blueprint on how strong a family can be. I can definitely tell you
it’s still attached to me today. I just want to pay homage to a
program that tried to make the world rotate a little bit better
each day. It didn’t matter your ethnicity, the feeling Family
Matters gave flowed through us all. And that feeling Family Matters
provided can only be describe as life changing. I want to thank the
producers of this program and say rest in peace to Family Matters.
As my days go by I will always remember that no matter the
circumstances the love of family always
matters.

James Shields had to buy one of his bracelets in order to get this photo.

Photo By: Q.Whitening

Posted By: Q.Whitening

Photo By: Q.Whitening

Posted By: Q.Whitening

Photos By: Q.Whitening

Posted By: Q.Whitening

There will be much more to come from the “Lost in The Night” project. So stay tuned.

 

Photos By: Q.Whitening

Posted By: Q.Whitening


Beach Moment

Posted: November 13, 2010 in Photos, Q.Whitening Photos
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Photo By: Q.Whitening

Posted By: Q.Whitening

Photo By: Q.Whitening

Posted By: Q.Whitening


I was Twenty-three with an attitude that could be described through the music I listened to; Gangster Rap. Rap was in entertainment’s forefront of lifestyle and I was proud to be a full fledge member of it. Then there was my daily, ghetto urban wardrobe. It consists of a wave cap with a white t-shirt that was two sizes too big coupled with a pair of blue jeans that was oversized. And to add to my hood attire, a fitted hat that I had to spend at least ten to fifteen minutes in the mirror fixing to urban perfection. The last piece to complete my style of wear was a fresh, crispy white pair of air force one Nike sneakers. There was only one way to ruin an outfit like this one; a dirt spot on my sneakers or on my pearly white t-shirt. And what clouded my thoughts even more was my regular precipitation of weed and alcohol. A daily diet of this paired with hood activity had my mind state shackled like a prisoner. At that time, the furthest I’ve been outside of the hood was North Carolina and Florida. A moment that best describes my mind state was when I went to my roommate’s family cookout. On the way to his family’s cookout, my stomach was having a conversation with me that could only be silenced by good food. As we get to the driveway leading to my roommate’s family backyard, a hunger satisfying aroma enters my nostrils. It activated my stomach like a lion seeing prey. The smell of barbecue chicken combine with collard greens and macaroni and cheese created a bright smile on my face. We enter the backyard as if we walked into a portal from our world to this one. It had a collage of past generations to present ones intermingled with future generations creating a backyard family tree. After my roommate introduced my friends and me to his family, his grandmother tells us something that is told at all cookouts. She says, “There’s plenty of food, help yourselves to whatever you want.” And boy did I do that. After I stacked my plate to my liking, I headed to the basement, where only in a good seat I could fully enjoy this plate. When I get down there my roommate’s cousin is sitting and eating. I say to her, “Hey what’s up.” But she was so into her plate of food that the best reaction I got from her was a wave. “Man, this food is that good? I can’t even get a word from you. Just a hand wave huh,” after my words, I give her a smile that indicates that I know exactly what she’s thinking. I sit down and start eating my food like a person who is reading a good book: full concentration. My friends come down the basement stairs with plates shortly after I settled in. The silence of the basement was interrupted with the sounds of chewing we produced from eating. No words were spoken until all the food from our plates was finish. Ten minutes after we were done, my roommate joins us in the basement. Then we all started to have a conversation about everyday events. The topics ranged from what star is dating who to who got killed and/or shot in the past week. But one topic that stood out like a pimple on prom night was when we talked about Jay-Z’s lyrics in one of his songs. I don’t have a full recollection of the lyric, but I do remember him saying something like, “I am a grown man, give me a fresh pair of jeans and a button up.” During that time white t-shirts was a uniform top I wasn’t going to change for anyone. So within this discussion, my roommate’s cousin was telling us how she likes to see guys in collared shirts and button ups. But my boxed thoughts didn’t have room for a collared shirt, especially when I felt like someone was telling me to do it. Using a vicious passion with my words, I said to her, “I will never change who I am! I’m not going to put a button up on because Jay-Z feels like putting one on. See that’s the thing, niggas are really doing this because he said so! To me, if that’s who you are that’s who you are, don’t change that because someone else said so. Basically, I don’t see me taking this white t-shirt off anytime soon.” Those words showcased my mind state in rare form at that particular time. The fuel for thoughts like this one was provided by the limits I held myself to at that moment. I didn’t understand that Jay-Z’s lyric only was his representation of him breaking out of the bonds of a limited world into a limitless one. But as time passed, new ventures in my life opened my mind like Malcolm X eyes after his voyage to Mecca. Years later, at the age of twenty-six, my perspective on the hood mind state was freed when I took all of my urban attire and gave them to a co-worker’s son. My change of clothes gave room to a mind state, now capable of shaping passionate limitless goals. Over that span of three years, my change of environment, friends, and conclusion of alcohol and weed usage developed thoughts that re-route my ignorance. I finally recognized, with the help of friends, that the world isn’t limited to the ghetto. And with this discovery, new forms of love were created for me. In so many ways environment, association, and even style of wear can shackle a person’s mind. It can be the difference between the future a person decides for themselves and a future determined by there limits. Critics say that hip hop is bad for this nation and should be banned. Well, I can reassure you that hip-hop is something that has helped to unshackle myself for a better living. If that lyric wasn’t used at that time, I may have never got the enlightenment needed for a better change. Breaking mental shackles is fight within itself, but when you finally break those bonds; your victory to mental freedom will open up boundless possibilities best described by the sounds of unshackled hands.

Written By: Q.Whitening

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Favorite Color

Posted: November 2, 2010 in Video
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So much power from the young. We need to pay attention to them and nurture them, they deserve it.

Video from: Brave New Voices

Posted By: Q.Whitening

I had the pleasure of shooting New York’s Halloween Parade on Sunday October 31st. This is the one time of the year where the freaks are allowed to come out at night. All the great costumes coupled with sunshine like laughter made the cold night feel like a warm afternoon day. Some costumes wowed me while others shocked me. But more then that the parade gave me memories to add to my shelf of memories. I was just fortunate enough to have my third eye at my side to bring you my memories. So from me to you,

HALLOWEEN’S FREAKS



Photos By: Q.Whitening

Posted By: Q.Whitening