On the Road with Culturunners

Once again, I took to the road with the crew from Culturunners. For this art focused trip, we trekked across the USA - from New York to San Diego. We stopped in Fort Stockton, Texas for a group photo, and an impromptu RV dance party followed by a high stakes poker game.

Neighbors Project in West Virginia

Driving through the endlessly curvy roads of West Virginia, I spied a wooden footbridge spanning the Big Coal River. There's few bridges across the river so, if you have a house on the other side from the road, you pretty much need to build your own. The river is fairly wide so building a bridge big enough for a car isn't really an option. Hence, suspended wooden footbridges run from the road side of the river to the other side where a house in the woods usually awaits.

This bridge was fairly long and tall and picturesque so, like good tourists, my assistant Zach and I exited the RV and began snapping photos of its teetering expanse. After a few minutes of photographing, a pickup slowed and the driver, an older man with white hair, leaned out. "That's my bridge. Gonna cost you five dollars to take a photo."

I knew he was pulling my leg so I tossed it back with a, "No problem. Send me the bill. I've got a special place for it." With a friendly smile, he got out and explained that his father built that bridge but it was leaning because of some flood damage.

Of course, I asked to take his portrait - to which he obligingly agreed. After setting my lights up and snapping a few photos, he punctuated the session with a "How about we bring some color into this shoot" and whipped out a pistol from the back of his waistband and stuck it in the front of his pants.

If a man wants color, I'm not gonna say no.

Neighbors Project Concord, NH

When shooting on the road, some days are good, some days are hard. My day of shooting in Concord, New Hampshire was a good one. I set up shop right on the bustling main street near the historic center of town and had no problem attracting willing subjects. After a few days where it's like pulling teeth, it's nice to have a gimmie sort of day. 

I decided to stop in Concord only because it was situated nicely on the map between where I was and where I wanted to go. Like most of my stops, I had little idea of where to set up as I exited the highway and made my way into the center of town. 

Unlike most of the Midwestern towns I've been to which have seen their town centers whither away, Concord's main street is a hive of independent shops and professional offices. On the streets, no shortage of dog walkers, students, office workers, lawyers, and shoppers strode along attending to their daily business. All were surprisingly friendly. Out of the dozens of people I approached, only few declined.

I saw this woman skating down the street and I literally chased after her. She stood out with her shocking hair, black skin and colorful attire. Not surprisingly, she's originally from Florida.