It’s a holiday. Independence Day. 4th of July. It is the day The Declaration of Independence was signed. The birthday of my country.
Bottom line. It’s sort of a big deal. In The United States we celebrate in many ways. Fireworks. Parades. Baseball Games. Carnivals. Barbecues. Fairs. Picnics. Concerts. Hot dogs.
We display our flag.
I’m in the middle of a huge digital house cleaning. It’s all images. All day. Every day. Sorting. Filing. Building master collections. Cleaning out the extras and mid process work product. There are reasons for my madness. I’ll get to that later. Much later in the summer. I discovered a very scattered collection of American flags. They live all over the place. In various files. On various hard drives. I’m not disorganized. I have pretty well-kept collections. I just file either by date or by location. Sometimes by subject if I have a big collection of images.
I thought I’d assemble a small portfolio of American flag pictures for you. This little group suits my style. It’s as much about the little things that make up The United States as anything. I’m not a big boom boom guy. So, no fireworks. I’m not big on huge buildings and monuments. So, no pictures of large places. I try not to eat too much processed food. So, no hot dogs.
I like little, more symbolic things. Hopefully, this portfolio won’t bore you.
I’ll tell a little story with each picture.
The above picture was made in the French Quarter. As I often do, I made it on the way to someplace else. I think I was photographing Easter parades and was walking on a street that ran parallel to the parade. Much faster to get around that way.
Las Vegas, Nevada. I was walking through a casino when I spotted a young woman taking a picture of the flag. A huge flag. Oh, how could I resist?
A flag as a hat. Sometimes, people call something like this disrespectful. Not this time. This is a Mardi Gras Indian. A big chief. He’s entitled. As much, or more, than anyone. The picture was made on Bayou St. John prior to the parade.
Memphis, Tennessee. The home of the blues. American music.
Lower 9th Ward. Hope and pride, post Hurricane Katrina.
The Bywater. We are still so affected by Hurricane Katrina. There are still Katrina crosses spray painted on buildings. Nine years later.
Sometimes the flag is art. No disrespect, just an artist’s statement.
The house is in shambles. The flag is bright.
The real cost of freedom. The National Cemetery at Chalmette. We left the beads. I was raised to always leave something to show that I was there.
Virginia City, Nevada. A reborn ghost town.
For my foreign friends. Thank you for hanging in there with this. These pictures, like most images are symbols. Icons. They have meaning. Hopefully, to you as well.
And now, as musician Eric Clapton closes his shows, “It’s high time we went.”