What are they keeping from us with this parade of shame?
It’s “Trump this” and “Trump that” all day long on lazy CNN and MSNBC. Let the Mueller investigation take its course and cover other important stuff too! Because meanwhile the wealth gap between the one percent and everyone else continues to soar, housing is less and less afforaldable to the average American, people are paying way too much for their health and education, our online privacy is constantly violated by government surveillance — and a hundred-and-one OTHER THINGS need to be addressed by the media in the news… But hey what we really have to see 24/7 are more of the daily antics of Donald J. Trump! WAY TO GO MAINSTREAM MEDIA!!!
Due to our weather and fine economy San Diego and Southern California’s wedding season is all year long.
words and photos by me, Reviewer Rob
As you may know, dear reader, we here at Reviewer Magazine will do pretty much anything legal for money. If you can be paid decently to do it and and not get in trouble, then hey, this is 2017 and we’re all about meeting those bills.
I began shooting photos in my early twenties back in the late-1980’s and was asked to shoot weddings from the start. Over the last ten years I’ve elevated my event coverage and portraiture to world-class levels and include wedding packages that combine artistry and journalistic techniques in a very unique style.
The worldwide event comes to Portland again this month on the 24th.
Last year I covered the World Naked Bike Ride in Portland as a photojournalist, and I was thinking about attending this year’s ride as a participant, but it looks like work will be keeping me in San Diego instead. This one will be at an as-yet unannounced location, and if last year’s protocol is any indication will follow a non-circuitous route that will be secret up until the last minute. According to their website the ride will be on June 24.
If you’re in the Northwest you should most definitely try to free yourself from social constraints and be there for this protest event in support of equality and acceptance. I’ve never seen anything like it and the people of Portland are totally The Bomb.
new music: LUNA DEATH TRAILS – RIDDEN COUNTRY TERROR SNOW
Friquita Francis, words & Marco Butcher, music.
Recorded at Boom Box Studios, North Carolina, produced in Istanbul, Turkey, 2016.
review by Reviewer Rob
LUNA DEATH TRAILS – RIDDEN COUNTRY TERROR SNOW” is a big and bawdy new single track with lyrics that meander all over the emotional map recorded by Friquita Francis and Marco Butcher. It was produced through a collaboratory effort from opposite sides of the world. Friquita teases the listener with her sometimes indecipherable voice which has matured and is noticeably stronger than in “Fry”, the last track I heard from her (unreleased) a few years ago recorded in New Orleans. There’s hints of PJ Harvey in her voice here and the cacophonous percussion and bass is reminiscent of Tom Waits while the vocals also call to mind some of the less angry versions of Lydia Lunch. You’re an audio voyeur to a private party with witches and multiform creatures brought to life from out of an Hieronymus Bosch painting. Look for a lot more from this band.
stultified from the bones sinking in
the worm holes in your skin laughing clocks
a great desires
and hide (shake it up) mountains to volcanoes
behind lustful eyes
a hazy morning
a foghorn cries push him deeper
you’ll never know
you’ll find (shake it up)
and prophesied knock me out
like a cold male lover
deepest shades of black
the pressure of your motor skills
your motive is a fact push him deeper baby
push him inside
wake up in santiago baby
with blood dripping from my mind as far away from you
as far away from me
as far away from time
and your fucking brainwashed kind you’ve got no money baby but you’ve got a whole lot of guns
you’ve got nobody baby
but you’ll have a whole lot of fun
Talking ink: Low Gallery in Barrio Logan at a mid-summer show during ComicCon
by Reviewer Rob
I had both my Nikons hanging on my neck this night with the goal of playing around with their capabilities. The D5200 and D5300 were set on their fastest ISOs for a shoot at Meegan’s art gallery/performance venue Low. I’d come to see a couple of bands play, Lisa Carver’s Suckdog and The Vaginals (Vaginals sounded great, by the way). It had been a couple of years since I’d last seen Meegan and I noticed she’d gotten a couple of new tattoos.
Meegan Nolan is the stylish owner and proprietor of Low Gallery. She’s all about art — the appreciation as well as the business of it — and only now while ‘shopping this pic did it dawn on me that she was wearing a stylin’ cartoon t-shirt (is that the Tazmanian Devil?). Classic, it was, after all, the weekend of the famous San Diego International ComicCon. Yes as a fashionista Meegan is also a triple threat. On this night her shiny gold pants were amazing. But these classic-era style tattoos were what I really liked. The symbolic “Black Rose” is on her right forearm and a standing nude ‘a la Sailor Jerry adorns her left.
I shot this while the bands were setting up for the show and Meegan was standing against the back wall of the space. No flash was used, just ambient light, so it’s grainy. Like I said, I was pushing what the low light ability of the cameras could do. I think at 1/100th of a second it’s pretty decent. Photoshop brought out more contrast and color from the original RAW image.
Image file info:
Tamron lens 18-270mm F3.5-6.3 DiII VC PZD B008N
Focal Length 18mm (in 35mm: 27mm)
Exposure: 1/100 sec; f/3.5; ISO 12800; Manual; Pattern Metering
Flash: Did not fire
Lisa Carver as “The Dying Mother” with Suckdog at Low Gallery in San Diego, July 2016
When Lisa Carver brought her Suckdog show to town last month I was ambivalent about attending but still probably would have gotten out to see it. Then I got (willingly) roped into driving her and her four-woman band up to L.A. the day after it so that made it required I show up. I took full advantage of the event and recorded Reviewer TV videos and shot photos of the Alternative-Popculture Star because few can argue she is anything but newsworthy. She may not be the Queen Of The Underground as some have accused her but she’s certainly the Dancing Queen.
While waiting outside Low Gallery for the doors to open (I found out later after calling Megan that the entrance was out back in the alley) I set my D5200 on one of its higher ISO setting of 6400 to shoot some photos of the neighborhood in the after-sunset streetlamp light of Barrio Logan with the Coronado Bridge in the background. Then when the show was going to start I began shooting crowd shots of the ten or so spectators that arrived to watch, keeping the settings the same. The idea was to use the camera mounted flash as little as possible so as not to distract the performers or the audience. I ended up using the flash a lot anyways but kept the speed fast. So the two pics below are a bit grainy but I fixed them and to some extent removed noise in Photoshop.
I had the camera-mounted tilt-flash on soft and in these vertical photos as in all of them I angled it towards the roof and used my cupped left hand as a block/reflector held above it to bounce some diffused light towards the subject.
I plan to begin setting up the GPS location info on my cameras because it looks like that’s been left out for some reason.
Both photos below were shot one after the other and were both vertical and full length but the one on top has been enlarged and cropped to reveal detail.
They were shot in quick succession with no adjustment and here’s the recorded image data taken from the bottom full-length photo:
Tamron SP AF 10-24mm F3.5-4.5 Di LD Aspherical IF B001N
at focal length 24mm (in 35mm: 24mm)
1/100 sec; f/4.5; ISO 6400; Manual; Pattern metering
Flash: Fired, Strobe return light not detected, Compulrsory flash firing, Flash function present, No red-eye reduction
PdX: “Portland is like, ‘We’ll try anything twice, maybe three times…'”
video by Reviewer TV
Reviewer TV documentary interview: World Naked Bike Ride 2016 Portland, Oregon, is a legally permitted form of protest allowed under the First Amendment and is a local version of the same worldwide event that takes place annually.
Two participants of the Portland version of the worldwide protest talk about why they got involved and what it means to them.
Pardon the out-of focus-nature of the video. I need to buy a proper video interview camera and not rely on this Nikon SLR which originally I thought would be an upgrade but actually a CoolPix or my Samsung 7 would be a better choice due to the center-point auto-focus features. The sound is good here tough because I had a camera-mounted shotgun mic. But yeah the image needs improvement.
Even out-of-focus the girls look good though. Love these girls.
World Naked Bike Ride PDX 2016, best friends. Click the pic to be taken to the video on Reviewer TV.
So I arrived at Mt. Scott Park in Portland at 8 p.m. to cover the World Naked Bike Ride and first thing I wanted to do, since I stood out like a sore thumb with my two Nikon SLRs dangling from my shoulders and my relatively obtrusive state of overdress, was find the organizers to establish press credentials and get a video interview. Luna was the official “Volunteer Coordinator” and although she was very nice and willing to supply me with any information I wanted she was unwilling to be interviewed on-camera. The media rep was a girl named Megan I believe but she wasn’t to be found amid the jostling crowd of people near the volunteer signup tents. So Luna began to ask around for a second choice. That’s when Stephen Upchurch came to our assistance.
Originally from Chicago I think he said he was, Upchurch described the World Naked Bike Ride in Chicago as being about equal in popularity to the hugely crowded affair that Pdx’s is. He gets into a bit of detail about how in Portland there’s a uniquely permissive legal status due to Oregon’s liberal view about public nudity as a form of protest. Later on I’ll add some pull quotes to this post from the interview but for now I’m hoping that Youtube viewers don’t rat on it for the naked people milling around in the background. This is a news video, people. It’s not a porno. Give it a rest.
Anyways, the World Naked Bike Ride (A Protest) happens every summer in various cities throughout the world and will be held again in 2017 in Portland.
The annual Portland Naked Bike Ride is a legally protected form of free speech.
For a long time now public nudity in Portland has been tolerated by the authorities as long as it was a protest, and this is what the World Naked Bike Ride officially is. The point is to demonstrate against oil-dependency and to protest for body positivity and also demonstrate how dangerous it can be to ride a bicycle on the road alongside cars. What better way to protest how vulnerable one is when sharing the road with cars but by riding in the nude?
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
~wording of the First amendment.
The World Naked Bike Ride is a globally organized effort to stage these protests in various cities but few have as much cooperation as in the City Of Portland, Oregon, whose police, it seems, simply wanted to know about it ahead of time, get a heads-up.
I arrived at the meet-up point, Mt. Scott Park, at the appointed time of 8 p.m., and since this was late June the sun still had about an hour left in the sky. The ride was scheduled to begin there at 9 and the six mile route was secret so the huge crowd (of roughly 10,000 as one estimate called it) would follow the leader to a distant point. The ride would not be a loop. Participant were asked to plan accordingly and most had backpacks and in some cases milk crates tied to their bik racks for holding a change of clothes as they peddled along wearing only tennis shoes and a smile. The ride motto was “As Bare As You Dare”.
The impression I got from the vibe of the crowd was one of real warmth and community. I was working fully clothed in a shorts and a t-shirt with two Nikons hanging off my shoulders by straps — one for still photos and one for video interviews — but when I told the naked people I approached that I was doing research for coverage in Reviewer Magazine nine out of ten of them smiled and enthusiastically agreed to be photographed and in several cases also do a video interview. The few who demurred did so kindly.
More than half the people in Mt. Scott Park were already undressed and seemed to have been that way long before the 8 p.m. meet time as I arrived for the, let’s call it, “pre-party”. People were already hanging-out, body painting, talking and listening to boom boxes. Some people discretely smoked and drank in various groups and a large impromptu naked dance party erupted on the dirt baseball diamond. This went on for quite a while with escalating intensity.
I’ve seen many public protest on the streets before, from union picket lines to church boycotts and political rallies. But none had as much pure comeradic fun for its participants as the World Naked Bike Ride in Portland. These people really enjoyed eachther’s company. Ages ranged broadly from college people in their twenties to families with kids to grey haired geriatrics. Everyone mingled freely. And despite the throng of naked flesh it was surprisingly tame and community-conscious in that there was absolutely zero salaciousness. In media law there’s something called “lascivious display”. It’s what men pay dancers in stripclubs for. But people shot photos of oneanother with their cell phones but I witnessed no sexually intended behaviour at all, no sexy posing, no obvious leering or otherwise weirdness. It was a normal day at the park, except for the nudity.
The ride kicked off at 9 p.m. and the group was crowding the streets for a six mile route that was kept secret until the appointed hour. Standing in one area that was less than a block long to shoot the photos of the rise itself the line of cyclist kept coming for more than an hour. It was an amazing thing, really. Portland is some kind of magical town for this to happen and for everyone to be happy and safe in doing it
Later that night during the event’s afterparty at an upscale Portland bar, the White Owl Social Club, many people partied and danced naked — “as bare as you dare” like they described it — and in the urban streets surrounding the venue people walked to and from their cars, in various states of undress from partial to complete, totally unmolested by the police. They were all part of an official civicly endorsed event that occurred only one day a year.
I keep going back to the idea that this is a unique event happening in Portland even though it is a branch the World Naked Bike Ride. Many other cities have the summertime event, to varied levels of local appeal, but PDX seems to take it to another level. LA’s reportedly went off as scheduled but was largely ignored by the media. San Diego’s was likewise negligibly received in Reagan’s Lucky Town. Las Vegas had a ride but it followed preemptive warnings that public nudity would not be tolerated and was in fact a serious crime in Sin City, go figure.
But the youthful spirit of Portland is strong, so the ride is a huge event there, and a good indicator of a rich future for a city of creativity and innovative thinking. Great cities are liberal at their civic core, and only stifle social independence and freedom at their own detriment. If people are free to safely express themselves and do new things that’s when an environment of newness is formed and a wealth of inventiveness and progress is born.
I plan to come back next year to the WNBRPDX, and may even be bold enough to ride a bike with a banana hammock or something.