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L-E-F 1 by UniqueNudes L-E-F 1 by UniqueNudes
(If you follow my regular line of work, please ignore this small diversion as I branch out into a new venue temporarily)

These images are for deviantART’s IdeAS 2005 Photojournalism contest, with the July-Sept theme/s being ”Liberty, Equality, Fraternity.” You may explore any or all three of the themes.
For my entries to the contest I have chosen a series of images I took on Easter Sunday at the Midnight Mission, located on Skid Row in Downtown Los Angeles. A large Easter breakfast was being served to all the homeless people, and many celebrities were on hand to help out their fellow man. I chose images containing both the famous and the homeless, to emphasize both Equality and Fraternity. I didn’t title any of the photos because it has always been my opinion that in good photojournalistic images a title tends to ‘color’ the piece, rather than let the viewer draw his or her own conclusions.


Image 1:
Mr. T. (of A-Team fame) has been a born-again Christian since the onset of cancer over 10 years ago. Although the Midnight Mission is not a religious organization, Mr. T. feels it is his Christian duty to help his fellow man. He spent the day hugging, shaking hands, signing autographs and talking to people, reminding them to ‘keep the faith.’ He had forgone his usual gold chains for the day, and instead had opted for a plain multi-colored wooden cross.
At one point during the morning I saw him standing with a young homeless man who is enrolled in the Mission’s Recovery Program, stopping what he was doing to pray with him. I was lucky enough to get the shot before the prayer was over.

Other Notes: I donated a special print of this image, entitled “A Prayer from Mr. T” that now hangs on the Mission Walls as an inspiration to its residents. (You can see the specially modified version here: [link] Selectively desaturated prints aren’t allowed in this contest, which is why I have chosen to submit this cropped version of the original instead.)
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:iconzephyrchaser:
zephyrchaser Featured By Owner Oct 3, 2007   Writer
I find it rare to see something so commonplace city-gritty in appearance but so tender in emotion. Good catch.
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:iconvirag0:
virag0 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2007
lol
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:iconcogwurx:
cogwurx Featured By Owner Jul 28, 2006  Professional Interface Designer
Well done. Something about this is really beautiful.
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:iconrevnook:
RevNook Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2005
Heartfelt...very touching.
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2005  Professional Photographer
Thanks. I'm glad; this image seems to have really meant a lot to people.
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:iconrevnook:
RevNook Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2005
I'm an old "Mr. T" fan myself. I never knew what happened to him; he just seemed to fall out of the world for a while. I think that anyone who watched the "A-Team" and the the Mr. T cartoon has been impacted by him.
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Aug 20, 2005  Professional Photographer
Yeah, he was a big icon from my childhood, and it was really neat getting to spend the day with him and interacting with him on a human level. More amazing, though, was the way he interacted with everyone else; specifically the homeless people. He really seemed to give them the faith that things could/would get better for them.
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:icon2ecneuqes:
2ecneuqeS Featured By Owner Aug 14, 2005
I pity the fool..........:slow:
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:iconsurrealist-geek:
surrealist-geek Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005
Wow - really beautiful photo. :clap:

I finally check out your work, and the first piece I see is of males wearing clothes - what are the odds...?
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005  Professional Photographer
Pretty slim, actually. ;)
But I really wanted to try my hand at photojournalisim...
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:iconsurrealist-geek:
surrealist-geek Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005
Always good to try something different. I'm even having a stab at photography since my brother gave me his old (digital) camera about a week ago. 1.3MP with no optical zoom, but it'll get me started. I quite liked the clarity (sharp focus, I guess) of some of my shots, at least until I started looking at your work...
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005  Professional Photographer
I look forward to seeing some of it!
My first digital was a 1.2mp CMOS Sony, but I still show some images from it at my shows.
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:iconsurrealist-geek:
surrealist-geek Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005
Thanks for showing interest; realistically, my early photography is going to suck pretty badly. I'll let you know if I get any up, either when the situation here improves or when I get my own website up.

Nice to know that a low-res camera can produce good results. Mind you, mine's a StarCam (whatever that is) - I don't think it was ever a pro tool...
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:iconzhavas:
zhavas Featured By Owner Aug 5, 2005  Student
aww, man... no gold bling cross
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:iconrex07734:
rex07734 Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2005   Photographer
This kind of image speaks thousands of words. You have done an excellent job capturing it. Just looking at it gives me the chills but with your story it is even more powerful. Job well done.
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Jul 17, 2005  Professional Photographer
Thank you very much. I'm glad that I am able to share it with the world.
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:iconatmosphotography:
Atmosphotography Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2005  Hobbyist Photographer
I prefer this cropping of this shot, But I still think that this is one of the most awesome photojournalism pieces I've ever seen. AndI'm agnostic w/ Buddhit tendencies. (see also: Buddhist lite.)
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2005  Professional Photographer
Thanks much. As you know, I'm also Buddhist but this image really spoke to me.
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:iconsavageartsval:
SavageArtsVal Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2005
This is an excellent image, most suitable for the photo journalism contest without words or comment. You've captured a forever moment in this image! I must say that it is quite inspiring to say the least. I would one day love to go to the Mission you speak of and see your image on the wall, and perhaps donate a day of service as well.

Inspired,
V

p.s. The multicolored cross Mr. T is wearing is a children's rosary, my brother was given one for his baptism when he was a baby, he used to teeth on it.
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Jul 2, 2005  Professional Photographer
Isaac works there, which is how I got the photography gig in the first place. I've taken to volunteering my time there, though, because of how well I see the programs working.
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:iconsavageartsval:
SavageArtsVal Featured By Owner Jul 3, 2005
Well, you know me and volunteering. I mentioned it to my mom, and she looked ite interested as well. If you could, could you send me info about location etc via pvt e-ml?

Your image alone is what trully drew me to this venue for volunteering. If only that one image of Mr.T's prayer...I was truly touched right down to my core.

Thanks,
V
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Jul 4, 2005  Professional Photographer
Rather than private e-mail, I'll mention it here, in case my work inspires anyone else to volunteer. I mean, that's what a good photojournalisim photo can do, right?

You can reach the Midnight Mission's Volunteer Coordinator Justin Wisniewski (AKA Isaac) at 213-624-9258 Ext. 1240 or by e-mailing volunteer@midnightmission.org. You can also find more info out at their website.

If you're not local to Los Angeles, you can always try shelters near your home as well.
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:iconsavageartsval:
SavageArtsVal Featured By Owner Jul 5, 2005
Thanks much, as you know I am active in the colunteer community where I live. I've donated my time to various organizations. Now that I have the information, I am planning on volunteering at least one time before I leave state.10 months and counting.

Thanks,
V
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:iconisecore:
isecore Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2005
Awesome photo, very powerful.
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Jul 1, 2005  Professional Photographer
Thank you.
Of all the images I have submitted for the contest, this is the one that speaks to me the most.
(It's also the only one I'm offering a print of, albiet a slightly different version --> [link] )
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:iconsurrealist-geek:
surrealist-geek Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005
Incidentally, you've got a typo in your sig - By my prints!
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005  Professional Photographer
I do! Thanks for pointing it out!
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:iconsurrealist-geek:
surrealist-geek Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005
:) No probs. I'm a language nut, and things like that bother me.
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:iconuniquenudes:
UniqueNudes Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005  Professional Photographer
So am I, and I'm surprised it escaped my notice for as long as it did. Probably because I have changed my sig since then.
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:iconsurrealist-geek:
surrealist-geek Featured By Owner Aug 8, 2005
Ah. I'm more used to retroactive signatures these days - I switched when I started putting Jark-related links in my sig.
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Details

Submitted on
July 1, 2005
Image Size
159 KB
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Camera Data

Make
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51 mm
Date Taken
Mar 27, 2005, 11:48:40 AM
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