Back to Sun City, Again
Self-publishing a limited edition book on my years spent photographing the residents of Sun City, Arizona didn’t stop me from returning last December for a German publication, or this month for myself. Now that I’m based in California, I can wake up in LA and make it to Sun City by sunset.
It’s the place I’m most comfortable taking photos, so why resist?
This trip was my shortest yet–exactly two full days of shooting, but because there’s always something happening there, I photographed things I never had before–a concert at the beautiful Sun Bowl, an outdoor amphitheater in town, a lawnbowling tournament after party, and I slammed on the breaks when I read on a church sign that they’d be blessing animals in the Sunday service the following morning and you know I had to photograph that.
Newspapers trained me well for feature photo hunting and that’s pretty much what I do in Sun City. See a yard sale, make a u-turn, chat with the woman running it, ask her what she’s up to tomorrow, take portraits but spend more time getting to know her than actually shooting, drive on until the next person I spot, get out, repeat. It’s community photojournalism at its finest and I love it.
And you know I’ll be going back again. I made a list of things I have to return and shoot that I’ve somehow overlooked the past 5 years of me coming (including the resident pirate and a woman who lives next door to her 90-year-old mother and has a slumber party with her every night). So yea, I’ll never be done with this place and its warm people and it’s probably time I got over my odd insecurity about falling back into this retirement paradise over and over and not diving fully the same way into other long-term projects.
So, behold, entirely too many photos from a two day shoot of Sun City, Arizona, the world’s first city of retirees.