• Arts,  Festivals

    Art All Night x 7

    Last Saturday’s Art All Night wasn’t just one celebration — it was, in fact, seven-in-one. Seven neighborhoods hosted events, and a group of DC Focused photographers tag teamed to better chronicle the evening. We saw art and artists, of course, along with musicians, dancers, hula hoopers, and selfie-taking revelers, all bathed in the shimmering light of DC at night. Feature image © 2016 Victoria Pickering   First Things First: The Art More than anything, Art All Night is about the art. I mean, it’s right their in its first name. The festival gave local artists a chance to display their work before huge crowds, educate people and, perhaps, sell some…

  • Portraits

    ‘Being Simple’- A photo essay about Andres Bong

    I first met Andres aka Andres Bong randomly as I took street photographs in front of Velvet Lounge on U Street in 2014. He was striking with his friendly demeanor, Bob Marley-like dreadlocks, his multiracial appearance and the fact that he spoke English in a refined American accent but could easily switch to street slang. I assumed he was no more than 25 years old. He mentioned his connection to Congo but I did not make much of it at that time. I took pictures of him and his then band mate from Banish the Culprit and we parted ways. Over the year, I bumped into him on 14th street…

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  • Events,  Street Photography

    A look back at the Memorial Day spectacle

    On a balmy Memorial Day weekend, I ventured to the crowded throngs near the Lincoln Memorial. Part of my curiosity for this year’s events were directly linked to the political climate, looming elections and other dynamics I wanted to investigate for myself. I ran into a courteous ex-service man and his bride, a number of bikers who obliged to my requests to take their photographs, people with interesting and catchy slogans on their t-shirts, as well as people crowded to see the Rolling Thunder display. It was a colorful day best best illustrated through black and white. All images © 2016 Nana Gyesie.  His work can be found on his website, flickr and Instagram. 

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  • Pic Five

    #DCFocused Pic 5: A weekend to honor and remember

    We’re big fans of storytelling and the images in today’s Pic 5 each do a remarkable job of telling the story about what Memorial Day in Washington, DC is about. Follow today’s contributors on Instagram at @minnie_ger, @ellievanhoutte, @nanagyesie, @pootie_ting and @wolfkann. To be featured in our Pic 5 selection, tag your photos #DCFocused. 1. Find the evocative image | Grace Wang Mary Alice Horrigan, a gold star mom. It means when you send your son to the war as a blue star mom, you never get chance to see him back. Her son Robert Horrigan is the reason to tagging the flags on national mall. Check out the name tags and stories under each flag!…

  • 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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  • Celebrations,  Festivals,  Music

    Let the beat funk you up — music festival is big part of parade’s fun

    The Funk Parade is sort of a misnomer. While a raucous parade down U Street is certainly the eponymous moment of the day, the day-long event is as much free music festival as it is parade. The bands played at 12 stages and performance areas during the day and 15 venues into the night — and DC Focused photographers were at most of them. Be sure to check out our Music Project for bonus coverage. Featured image © 2016 Jeffrey Morris. Chelsey Green © Clif Burns The Ron Holloway Band © Zack Lewkowicz Reesa Renee © Sean Kennedy Lucky So & Sos © Rob Cannon Nappy Riddem © Joe Newman Funk Ark © Zack…

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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…

  • Featured,  Street Photography

    The 24-hour Project: Washington DC

      I remember feeling like I had become a bonafide street photographer in 2015 after spending nearly 24-hours on the streets of Washington DC taking pictures and posting one every hour to Instagram. This was for the annual 24 hour project hatched by Renzo Grande and Sam Whittier, New York and California based street photographers. I decided to stretch my endurance again this year on March 19th, for this year’s 24 hour project. I was the ambassador for Washington DC, and one of nearly 2.800 registered participants in more than 103 countries. The purpose of the project is always to document the human condition. Once again, I spent 24 hours on the…

  • Instagram,  Portraits

    #DCFocused Pic 5: Taking your portraits to the next level

    What makes a good portrait? An interesting face is always a good start but there are techniques and compositional considerations that can take your portraits to the next level — the way today’s contributors have done. Follow today’s contributors on Instagram at @kaitlinjanephoto, @nanagyesie, @lukasnorth, @sturniolo and @frenchieyankee. To be featured in our Pic 5 selection, tag your photos #DCFocused. 1. It starts with the eyes — Kaitlin Moreno | @kaitlinjanephoto #portrait #portraiture #headshot #winstonsalem #fall #light #portraitpage #uncsa #northcarolina #model #dcphotographer #dmv #kaitlinjane A photo posted by kaitlin moreno (@kaitlinjanephoto) on Dec 6, 2015 at 5:42pm PST There are a lot of great things happening in this portrait. The late-afternoon backlight creates a wonderful…

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  • Dispatches,  Featured,  Street Photography,  Street Portraits

    Dispatches: A Blustery January in London

      Enroute to Accra, Ghana, I made a much needed stopover in London. One of my favorite cities in the world after Accra, Washington DC and New York. My endless fascination borders on social psychology, anthropology and, perhaps, some innocent voyeurism. It’s amazing — I get to use my trusty Fuji X-T1 and iPhone as the medium to “scratch my itch” in trying to understand how other people live, as a means to understanding my place in the world. These monochrome photos show what I saw from Regent Street, Green Park, Hounslow and other places. All images © Nana Gyesie.  His work can be found on Tumblr, flickr and Instagram.  Dispatches is our occasional look…

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  • Events

    #Snowzilla Act 2: In the belly of the blizzard

      Hopefully, you survived Snowzilla with no major damage or power outages. DC Focused photographers were out and about documenting the storm in DC, Maryland and Virginia. Here’s what they saw. [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=””] [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=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line” custom_height=””] [divider line_type=”Small Line”…