Welcome to Oaklandphotojournal.com. Capturing Oakland’s impressive beauty is as challenging as freezing its constant change in a single frame nonetheless it is this site’s goal to focus in on (and create framed compositions) of Oakland’s dynamic splendor. Although Oakland finds itself in a watershed moment in its development, the massive geographic shifts evident as we enter the second half of 2016 are part of the Bay Area’s long standing history of progressive politics that have developed along side it’s art. My contribution to that history seeks to create a visual language that pays homage to one of my favorite literary styles. I draw large inspiration from the journalistic prose style Oscar Z. Acosta and Hunter S. Thompson made prominent in the late 60s – early 70s. I call my photographic approach “gonzo” because it seeks unconventional subjects, the hyperbole of form, and strives to represent subjectivities and movements that convey the set of values of the time/space they are shot in, namely, Oakland. Compositions that demonstrate the way the camera itself becomes part of the story its telling is emblematic of what I call gonzo photography.
The site features image, text, and the often ephemeral aura of the universe. The Photo Journal posts track the meaningful relationships between the denizens and their city, while the Zine page explores the edge of observation and proposition in street photography. Finally, the gallery pages will highlight selections from my portfolio. These projects in series, both past and and ongoing, are photographic phenomenological exercises. My photo series seek to excavate meaning of social phenomena, each frame performs a kind phenomenological bracketing, and invites us to analyze experience in space, in struggle, in fun, in the throes of creation, in rage, in love, etc…
***All featured written and photographic work is owned by the author and cannot be copied or distributed without his explicit written consent.
— JMG, Berkeley, CA