Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Air Show

The Naval Air Station in Corpus Christi held the annual South Texas Shoot Out over the weekend. Thousands of air show enthusiasts came out to look up at the sky and watch planes take off and land. I'm not all that into airshows, and with rain predicted in the weekend forecast I was really not looking forward to this one. Luckily the rains stayed away, and the clouds started to break just as the Blue Angels started to perform.

And man, they were loud. I loved these photos of these girls looking for the planes, seeing them come, then covering their ears as they roar by. It ran as a three-photo series in the paper, which I though worked well.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter

Thursday, April 09, 2009


The Hooks season doesn't officially start until later tonight, but baseball fans were treated to a special exhibition game last week against the team's major league affiliates, the Houston Astros. I'm sure coming out onto Whataburger Field was a big change from Minute Maid Park.

They also had a Pee Wee baseball team named the Astros come out on the field before the game to stand by Hooks players for the National Anthem. I was kind of obsessed with them, but for a while they wouldn't stop looking at me and posing. Eventually they forget I was there.

Another photographer was assigned to shoot the game. My mission was to get a couple of pre-game features for A1.

The Hooks actually won, although I'm told that by the end of the game they were really just playing against other Hooks players in Astros uniforms. We'll see how this season pans out starting tonight.

Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Siempre Selena

It's been 14 years since popular Tejano singer Selena was gunned down in a Corpus Christi hotel by her fan club president, but many of her fans are just as faithful today as they were then. One woman told me she still listens to her music every day. Every day! I turned to her sister standing next to her, and she looked back at me and said, "Yup, EVERY day."

There was a moment of silence at her memorial along the Bayfront, followed by some dancing and singing. One Selena enthusiast dressed liked the late singer in a custom made outfit. It really looked authentic. The rest of the days events took place behind a small convenience store in her old neighborhood. One of the outside walls has a big Selena mural, and each year for the last 14 years fans have gathered to remember and hear performances of her music.

I was in high school when Selena was killed. I knew who she was because my mom liked her music, but I was not a fan myself. I remember how big of a news item it was when she died. I grew up in Lake Jackson, which is where Selena was born and lived the first few years of her life before moving to Corpus Christi. I remember a few details of that time very clearly. I remember seeing a shadowy vigil photo the next day in the local newspaper, with a teary-eyed schoolmate front and center holding a candle in Clute Park. I remember Houston news anchor Marlene McClinton calling Lake Jackson a "tiny community" as she introduced a story about her hometown. We all got a kick out of that. At one point ABC reporter John Quinones came to town for a story. Years later, I remember going to the local theater with my family, and getting such a thrill from the opening few scenes that were set supposedly set in Lake Jackson. "It really does look like Lake Jackson!" we marveled. I also remember crying at the end, mostly because I cried a lot back then, but also because her death really was tragic and unneccesary. I guess that is why I some people can't stop wondering what could have been, faithfully remembering a star they could call their own.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Belated Spring Break

I was going through my photos from last month for the NPPA monthly clip contest, and I realized I didn't post any of my Spring Break photos to the blog. Can't have that.

Spring Break is one of those annual events that photographers around here dread. I was lucky enough to avoid the madness for most of March. Each wave of college kids came and went week after week, until I was finally sent out to shoot some photos from the final weekend of revelry on Padre Island. As much of a pain as it to navigate the inebriated crowds, I guess I shouldn't complain about getting paid to hang out on the beach and take pictures of people frolicking in the surf and sun. And I can't tell you how many times I was offered free beer. I never took any, of course.

I loved this photo. I though it was such a quintessential Spring Break scene. I took several photos of people drinking, and whenever I asked their ages for the cutline, they were always 21. What a coincidence.