Portraits: Personal Quips

Dallas 2019.

I was walking around downtown with a camera. This man stopped me.

“Hey take a picture of me. I’m from Cincinnati. I’ve been drifting my whole life. I’m gonna make a change in america. I want people to remember my face”

Riga, Latvia

Latvia 2019.

I met Vladimir while hitchhiking just outside of Riga. He graciously invited me for tea, showed me around his house, and village.

“It’s not easy for ethnic Russians in Latvia. Regardless, this is our homeland. There’s no where else to go.”

Lyaksh, Tajikistan 2019.

I was invited to spend the night on the outdoor veranda of his family house. It was a long night- giant bugs, barking dogs and humidity made sleep difficult.

“The Moscow underworld drags you in. I went to my friend’s apartment. There was a body covered in blood. The man was dead. It was time to go back home to my family”

Buhkara, Uzbekistan 2019.

Without exaggeration, one of the most stressful moments in Central Asia. I couldn’t lose the game- it’s my dignity!

“Chess isn’t over until you finish the game”

Dallas 2019.

“Honey that’s enough taking pictures. Have a cookie. Are you hungry? Let’s go get some nachos down on Elm street.”

Garam Chasma, Tajikistan 2019.

A few minutes after getting into the van, he instructed me to hide below my bag as we passed a checkpoint. It was to avoid paying the entrance fees.

“Let’s go to the springs. Get some minerals. Wash off. Then keep going.”

Haft Kul, Tajikistan 2019.

I’m hurrying to my homestay, anxious of the coming darkness. He catches up behind me on his donkey, “chai?”. I politely decline. He asks again, I refuse, pointing at the sun. He persists, several times over. I glance at his scythe, he looks at my pace.

“Get on donkey!”

Dallas 2019.

I met this man across the street from the Dallas public library.

“Yes please, go ahead and take my portrait. I wanna talk. Im DC. I wear tigers hair so everyone knows my part of street. I keep it clean. No drugs my whole life man”

Haft Kul, Tajikistan 2019.

Our exchange was commonplace, a friendly little back and forth of pleasantries. He graciously allowed a portrait, exclaiming with pride,

“Share my face with America!”

Buhkara, Uzbekistan 2019.

She’s such a sweetheart.

“Isn’t our city beautiful”

Dallas 2019.

She was standing outside of a small chicken restaurant with her husband.

“I’ll just talk about politics and you take pictures”

Thoughts? Questions? Similar Nostalgia?