A Colorful Saturday Morning

Spent my Saturday morning getting blasted with color, then rode my bike across town looking like a bag of Skittle.  Fun times.

Check out a few stills from the Color Run in downtown San Jose.

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Drunk Gummy Bears Celebrate Superbowl

I am so friggin excited about Superbowl today!  Growing up in the Bay Area, I’ve been a 49ers fan for as long as I can remember.  I was just a kid when they won their last Superbowl so I never really got to appreciate them in their prime. This has been a long time coming for us 49er faithful, but the day is here!

I’m looking forward a day of yelling at the TV screen, drinking beer, and eating some excellent BBQ prepared by a friend that collects smokers.   I’m definitely wearing elastic pants for the occasion.  And I’ll be wearing my 49er’s jersey–on the back it says ‘Young’ of course!

My contribution to today’s epic Superbowl party?  Vodka gummy bears.  The recipe is so easy.

  1. Put a 3 lb bag of Haribo gummy bears in a glass bowl.
  2. Pour a 750 ml handle of raspberry vodka over the bears.
  3. Let it sit in the fridge for 2 days.
  4. Enjoy!

Of course, just bears isn’t enough, I had to do it Superbowl style.  Check out my drunk gummy bear snackadium.

Or as I like to call it, GummyBowl 2013.

Vodka Gummy Bears celebrate Superbowl

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Have fun today guys! Hope your team wins. Unless your team is the Ravens. haha.

A Visit to Oakland Art Murmur

In search for something artsy to do in Oakland? Well if you’re free on the first Friday of the month then Oak­land Art Mur­mur is place to be.  What started off as a hum­ble lit­tle art walk in 2006, has transformed into an energetic 8 block street fes­tival that celebrates all things creative.

21 gal­leries stay open late to show­case the wonderful (and weird) works from local artists.  And though there’s some really cool contemporary work inside the galleries, in my opinion the real magic is from the community outdoors.  The mixture of art, food truck aromas, live muic, and outrageous fashions, lends itself to a sensory overload of all things Oakland.

A few things you might see:

  • The bubble guy – biggest bubbles you’ll see in the Bay Area.
  • Someone’s aunt selling homemade Jambalaya.
  • Animated films on the ‘The Wall.
  • Fashionistas dressed to the nines.
  • Soul marching band.
  • Hip hoppers and bow ties.
  • Protesters wearing neon.
  • The constant smell of herbs in the air, and I’m not talking about oregano.
  • A freestyle dance competition breaking out.
  • Ceramic monsters.
  • Circus performers.
  • Independent sidewalk art shops.
  • Tatted up girls rocking red lipstick and pin curls.
  • Live jazz performed by 14 year olds.
  • Little old Salvadorean lady demonstrating Pupusa making techniques.
  • Crafty grandmas.
  • Hipsters carrying brown bags.
  • Crafty grandmas carrying brown bags.

If I had to describe OAM in one word, it would be ‘fresh.’  I’m always sur­prised by some­thing new here.  Once I went to check out a live bal­let per­for­mance, but ended up tak­ing part in a spon­ta­neous dance party that shut down the streets.  Not a bad way to spend an after­noon. Not bad at all.

Here are a few pics from a day at Oakland Art Murmur in 2012. Decided to try out some monochrome toning for this set.

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If you’re interested in checking it out, here’s a map:

Photographing FurCon 2013

Strolling around downtown, I see a brown bear bear strutting his pot belly down the street. I think to myself, okay no big deal, just a mascot on the way to a game that’s all.

A minute later comes a raccoon on his hind legs.  Then a fox with chains around his neck. And then hoards of regular folks with fluffy tails hanging from their jeans.

Ummm what? Wait just one second…

Furries take over San Jose

Furries from all over the nation gathered for Further Confusion (FurCon) at the San Jose Convention Center last weekend. For those that haven’t heard of them, Furries are a subculture of people that appreciate all things anthropomorphic (animal characters with human characteristics.) The Furry Fandom represents everyone from the casual ‘My Little Pony’ fan sporting just a t-shirt to those that are only happiest when living as their fuzzy spirit animal.

With these guys putting in so much work (not to mention money) into their outfits, I knew it would be a great chance to test out some new camera equipment. Plus, I was dying of curiosity to see what this Furry world was all about.

Better than a zoo

Let me tell you it was some damn good people watching–or should I say animal watching?  A few highlights:

  • A girl’s national volleyball tournament was happening in the same building.  That’s right, teen girls and suburban mom types crossing paths with Furries all day. Reactions were priceless.
  • Getting primed on Furry etiquette when I called someone’s outfit a costume. Just so you know, it’s a ‘Fursuit’ not a costume.
  • Velociraptor!  Which brings me to the question; what the heck do you call a Fursuiter without fur anyway?
  • A wolf doing some sweet breakdancing moves.
  • A chivalrous fox putting a jacket over the shoulders of his lady in the cold. Didn’t matter that she was already wearing a 3 inch thick foxy fursuit too, manners are manners.
  • A wooly mammoth on all fours– it was like I was at a natural history museum.
  • Noticing that even subcultures have their own sub-subcultures.  While everybody was really friendly with one another,  ponies seemed to hang out with ponies, and cats with cats.  Totally reminded me of high school.

Shooting wise, I thought I would have a hard time because the lack of human faces, but these guys had a lot of personality through body language.

Shedding misconceptions

Furries have a really bad rep because of pop culture. But in reality the sex maniacs extremist are just a tiny percentage of the good natured population.  Honestly, you’d probably should be more worried about the neighbor that never leaves his house.  Not too much freaky stuff going on (that I saw.)  In the end, I didn’t see much difference between a Furry and a ComicCon attendee in a Chewbacca outfit.

What I did see was a vibrant community of eclectic people who were open and friendly.  I got a lot of high fives and hugs (they give the best hugs by the way.) They were creatives. They were self proclaimed geeks and freaks and proud of it.  Costume artists. Puppeteers. People that just wanted to have dress up and have some fun.   So what if they love Pokemon a heck of a lot more than the rest of us?  “To each his own.”

Even though I know I’ll never completely understand this culture, I walked away a little more clarified at Further Confusion.

Check out my photos from the day:

FurCon Fox getting a charge

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“Oh you’re looking at me?”

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So much to say, without a single word spoken.

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Stolen moment

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I had no idea DeadMau5 was making an appearance

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So I’ve got to ask, if you had to choose a furry personality (fur-sona) what would it be?

Mine? Outer space neon koala for sure.

No pants are the best pants

Just another chilly January day in San Francisco…

No Pants Bart Ride SF 2013

Taken during the 12th annual No Pants Bart ride on Sunday Jan 13th.

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