• Celebrations,  Events,  Parades

    Pride and Joy

    The contrast is shocking: the elation of Saturday afternoon’s festivities in Dupont Circle and the anguish of the news from Orlando on Sunday morning. And yet, that should not take away from the overwhelming joy of the Pride Parade. Always a happy occasion, revelers had one more thing to celebrate this year. This was the first Pride Parade that took place after the Supreme Court legalized gay marriage in June of 2015. Here, DC Focused photographers tried to capture some of that sense of happiness. Featured image © 2016 Victoria Pickering.                                      

  • Featured,  Parades,  Street Performers,  Street Photography,  Street Portraits

    Of funk and urbanism: An ode to Jane Jacobs

    I went to the Funk Parade; part of the cadre of official photographers. I have recently been inspired by urban theorist, Jane Jacobs, the original proponent of organic urban renewal and sidewalks in the city. To me, Jane should be a street photographer’s hero. Her ideas on urban design were on my mind when I arrived at the parade. Besides seeing the parade, I was mostly interested in what people were doing, how they were interacting and why they were there. My somewhat Felliniesque take on the parade was not helped by the fact that I had Skepta’s ‘Konnichiwa’ and Radiohead’s ‘Burn the Witch’ on heavy rotation. Here is to…

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  • Arts,  Celebrations,  Events,  Festivals,  Music,  Parades

    On this day, it was the District of Funk

    U Street was all about the funk on Saturday — music, dancing in the street, drum lines and tens of thousands of people turning out for the all-day party and music fest known as the Funk Parade. The festival of funk took over the U Street corridor, as old and new DC came together to celebrate the city’s cultural heritage. The Mayor of Funk Town was even there throwing beads to cheering constituents, walking just a few hundred yards ahead of parade participants carrying a gigantic, inflatable joint. The parade slogan, after all, was “roll your funk.” Spread along the corridor from the Howard Theater to 14th Street, the festival included…

  • Celebrations,  Festivals,  Parades

    Are you ready for the funk? Annual U Street parade and festival returns

    Although the Funk Parade is just in its third year, it has already become one the District’s marquee cultural events. The all-day celebration pays homage to the U Street corridor’s rich musical and cultural heritage. This year, the DC Focused community is proud to be part of the event as the official photographers of the parade and musical acts. So, it’s fitting that we look at some of our favorite images from last year’s Funk Parade and talk about things to consider if you’re planning to photograph this  year’s event. All images are part of the DC Focused flickr pool. 1. Jeffrey Morris | Work the angles   Jeffrey got low on this photo, which produces…

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  • Celebrations,  Misc.,  Parades

    Discovering America

    When we came to America, a long time ago, we prayed and we placed our flag at the shore. Some of us came in search of adventures, some in search of dreams. Lots of us were running away from nightmares. We brought our religion, we brought our culture, we brought our traditions. And some of the natives received us well, others resisted; but still, we were able to make it and we prevailed. We are still exploring the place, conquering it, and making it our new home. We are the immigrants, and every day, every moment, we are discovering America. All images © Pablo Benavente, aka Pablo Raw. You can…

  • Celebrations,  Parades

    A look back at last week’s Fiesta DC — a celebration of Latino roots

      As it happens every year, Constitution Avenue, home of classic buildings and civic architecture was transformed recently into a colorful display of song and dance. The Parade of the Nations of Fiesta DC, which was held a week ago, is a celebration of the diversity of cultures and rhythms that are part of Latin America. We Latinos were there to say that we are part of this nation but don’t forget our roots — they are our contribution to this great country. All images © Pablo Benavente, aka Pablo Raw. You can see more of his work on his flickr page and on PabloRawPhoto.com. You can follow him on twitter @pablorawphoto. [divider…

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  • Celebrations,  Festivals,  Parades

    Say it loud and proud DC: Scenes from Capital Pride

    We love the Capital Pride Parade and Festival because it’s one of those weekends where this ladder-climbing, suit-wearing, self-important city lets its hair down. And because you get such wonderful photo opportunities. Featured image, Freedom – Pride 2015  by Pablo Raw, is part of the DC Focused flickr pool. More images from the pool below. [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] Freedom – Pride 2015 by Pablo Raw [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””]   [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””]

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  • Celebrations,  Events,  Festivals,  Parades,  Street Portraits

    Capital Pride – June 13 and 14

    Capital Pride is a week-long event, with the major public activities being the parade (June 13 starting at 4:30) and the festival (June 14 from 12-7). Here is my game plan for enjoying the event and taking photographs. At the parade, I like to start near the beginning of the parade, watching the participants as they get ready before the parade starts. Then I watch the parade near its beginning on P Street, enjoying both the parade and the spectators (and if you are lucky, you can catch the beads!) The parade has a long winding route, so there is still plenty to see after the parade has passed by…

  • Celebrations,  Parades

    Tips for photographing parades

    D.C. has lots of great parades, including the Memorial Day parade coming up on Monday.  But parades can be difficult to photograph.  Even if you get there early and get a good spot, last-minute arrivals can surge into the street and block your view. So here are some ways to get good photos despite the obstacles: If the parade route is too crowded, go to the block before the parade starts, where the groups are lined up.  Often they start their parade routine on this block while waiting their turn. Find where the groups are rehearsing, which can yield interesting images. See the parade twice.  If your starting viewing place…

  • Celebrations,  Parades

    U Street gets in the groove with 2nd annual #FunkParade

    DC got down on Saturday. The 2nd Annual Funk Parade brought the beat to U Street and and thousands of revelers provided the moves — a booty shaking, foot stomping, hand clapping celebration of DC’s cultural history and diversity. It was a picture perfect day for it, too. Here are some of the best images from the DC Focused flickr pool. [Updated: 8:15 a.m., Monday] Featured image, Urban Artistry, Funk Parade Day Fair, by Lorie Shaull is part of the DC Focused flickr pool. More images from the pool below. [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] Surprised by the dragon by Victoria Pickering [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] Funk Parade by Dimitris Manis [divider…

  • Celebrations,  Parades

    Chinatown parade rings in the Lunar New Year

    Happy Year of the Ram. Or Goat. Or Sheep. The annual Lunar New Year Parade returned to Chinatown with lion dancers, some firecrackers and lots of free fortune cookies. Featured image by Joe Newman is part of the DC Focused flickr pool. More photos from the pool below. [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] Lion Dancer by Joe Newman [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] Lion dancer by Victoria Pickering [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] Chinese New Year by JJ Jackson [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] DC Dragon Boat Club by Joe Newman [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] Chinese New Year by JJ Jackson [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] Climbing up to see the firecracker dance by Victoria…

  • Parades

    Did the weekend really have to end?

    Wait, did you think the weekend was over? What? Over? Did you say “over”? Nothing is over until we decide it’s over. If you’re like us and still dreaming about the incredible weather we had over the long weekend, then here’s a parting shot from the Capitol Hill Fourth of July parade. Featured image by Mike Licht. It is part of the DC Focused flickr pool. Mike blogs at NotionsCapital.

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