Frequently, my journey while photographing on the streets of Atlanta has less to do with the success of the images I create and more about my interactions with the people I meet. Such was the case last weekend when I met Richard Taylor outside his warehouse studio on Krog Street. He was washing “bee shit” off a vintage car and I was entranced with the beautiful light that illuminated the inside of his two-story garage that housed four other vintage cars in various states of repair. There were bikes, tires and the body of a car hanging from the ceiling and a plethora of tools neatly arranged on shelves and benches. After chatting a bit he told me he raced cars and motor bikes and tried to convince me that he was a professional tinkerer. I was invited upstairs to tour his studio and it was in that space that I learned about the depth of this man. Every nook and cranny reflected his passions. Richard is an architect, general contractor, pilot, artist, beekeeper, chef and videographer. One of his great adventures spanned 11 years. He and a partner recovered a World War II fighter plane that was buried 265 feet under the Greenland Icecap and he invented a contraption to melt the ice in order to excavate the plane. There was no end to the interesting life that Richard Taylor has led and is still living. In the end our conversation shifted to family. It was his insights and wise advise about raising a teenage boy that most impressed me. It was advise that I have reflected upon as I continue to be challenged with parenting my 15-year-old son. Although Richard Talyor’s studio had been my first stop on my morning photographic adventure, I decided to return home as I left his studio. I knew my adventure couldn’t possibly get better than that.
This past weekend, Atlanta’s 44th Atlanta Pride Festival coincided with National Coming Out Day. The festivities culminated in a parade on Sunday morning. The sidewalks along the staging area became makeshift dressing rooms where make-up was applied and elaborate costumes donned. Pasties were applied, breast forms were stuffed into bras, wigs were sprayed and finally, high heels slipped on. Participants in the parade included corporations, churches, schools, clubs and various organizations that came together to celebrate and support diversity.