The Fountain of Youth: Parade

Posted on June 27, 2016 in Long-term Project, Personal Work

(First off: I haven’t blogged here in 6 months. There are a couple of good reasons (excuses) for that and they are: First, I post a lot on Instagram in realtime, follow me there, second off I have been very busy shooting for and running my other photography business with my husband David Walter Banks — we work as a team and photograph celebrities and do commercial lifestyle work, which you can see here at However, that doesn’t mean I’m not shooting anymore, I’m still doing personal work. This is a first attempt at catching up.)

The first time I went to Sun City with my camera they had their 50th annual anniversary parade. The second time I went to the Fountain of Youth they had their 50th annual anniversary parade. (You can see my first trip to the Fountain of Youth HERE)

So I’m out of the closet on that topic now: yes, I like retirees. Yes, I like taking photos in the desert (bright! harsh! light!) and I really like parades (hey, my second internship was at a series of community weekly newspapers and I adored the kids and dogs and parades beat). So it should come as no shock that I headed back to The Fountain of Youth with two film cameras for another round.

And lemme tell you, trying to shoot a parade on a Rolleiflex when you’re still relatively new at using it was the playing out of a nightmare I have every so often where there’s amazing photo after amazing photo and my camera doesn’t work. Case in point: I had to reload film right as the old guy with his pants cut out wearing rubber butt did a little dance for me, and then he hopped back into a golf cart and the parade marched on. But I was only shooting this because I wanted to. No client pressure. No deadline (hey, I’m blogging this months after I shot it). It didn’t matter if I missed capturing that cute old man booty (as much as it annoyed me that I did). It’s good to slow down (or try to), it’s good to challenge yourself, it’s good to put yourself in a happy place. (I’m a workaholic so I’m giving myself a pep talk here, bear with me.)

Heading to this sunny scene in the middle of nowhere wasn’t about a portfolio piece, it was about feeling good and being instinctual. Meeting people. I like being in the presence of joy and this particular place is full of smiling faces.

And it all started with one huge cinnamon roll, hot and gooey and all over my face as I walked around the neighborhood looking for the start of the parade.

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