Monthly Archives: March 2011

New Faces: Sam and Ryan

Just finished up Sam Marie’s Face =)

She is an awesome animator! If you ever need some animation done or if you are looking to add to your team be sure to contact her! http://www.imdb.com/name/nm3822321/

Ami Storck (I’ll get her up soon enough) and Sam are new friends of mine. They both really surprised me with how supportive they are due to their willingness and excitement to come out to my hockey games to cheer and get rowdy after only knowing me for a couple weeks and hanging out maybe twice. Means heaps!

Sam rules and was a blast to take photos of. One day I’ll get some of the more cartoonish faces up. I just really liked this shot so it is the first to make it. =)

Ok. Here is my buddy, Ryan Brekke.

Ryan has been the most interesting shoot yet. Not only was he all over the map with poses but, we got talking and sharing some really random stuff during the shoot.

At one point Ryan mentioned how some of our friends and he were discussing clever and funny porno site names. I mentioned a few funny ones that exist, including MeatSpin.com

Next thing we know we are loading it up while shooting because Ryan had never seen it before. haha. When I have more time I will add a good one of Ryan showing his face the first time he saw MeatSpin. haha.

Apparently, Ryan was so taken back by the experience he insisted that I always show my subjects MeatSpin at some point during the shoot to capture some really good faces and break the ice. haha. I think he might be onto something!

Once Ryan has a site I’ll throw it up!

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Do someone a favor right now.

I hang out often on a fun message board called YayHooray. It is frequented by some of the most inspiring and motivating artists I have come across on the internet. It is where I “met” Olly Moss and Reilly Stroope (both are amazing guys and in the early days of aRefuge.com they played a part in making icons and artwork). I am usually bouncing around threads fueling my own ambition by viewing the artwork shared. Every so often though someone shares something else that is in no way tangible like art is.

I just happened across one of those intangibles that is far more powerful and moving than anything “real” can be. A member of the site made a simple post asking for advice for domain names for a website he is helping build for a friend.

The friend is named Crystal and she is looking to document a string of adventures on her new website. The purpose of these adventures is to see how much she can experience over the course of 182 days.

I’m going to paste her words that he shared on the forum for you to read. It will explain what 182 days means to her and help you understand how and why you can do her a wonderful favor with little more than 15 minutes of your time.

From Crystal’s Facebook:

So I have been sitting on some news for a while, trying to digest what’s been going on. So, I am sorry if you have asked how things are going with my health and I have been vaguely optimistic. I don’t want you to feel like I have been dishonest, but in reality when cancer becomes a casual topic it’s hard to drop hard news when talking in passing.

6-12 months with a second round of chemo. The cancer has metastasized in my liver and the results of the last few tests puts me in stage IV ovarian cancer. I also have some immune system malfunctions going on along with kidney damage from the chemotherapy. I feel okay from day to day, although I am suffering from severe anemia which makes me tired from time to time. And to be honest, I’m not really up to discussing the details of this circumstance over and over again. I’m sure you have questions, but it’s emotionally draining to continually talk about the logistics of my health,. I’d honestly rather hear about YOUR problems.

I am planning on doing chemo, and also planning on trying another anti-cancer diet. I’m also going to try and balance that with a whole lot of fun. I’m open to all kinds of suggestions as well, I know some of you have family members who have survived cancer, feel free to put them in touch with me. I’m open.

So there is that. I don’t feel much aside from motivated to live the shit out of my life, even more than I have been. I’m not saying I’m going to get all “live fast, die young” and start putting heroin in my ass and driving off a cliff Thelma and Louise style, but I am really looking at what quality life I have…and the things I want to do. I don’t feel like this is it, yet, and maybe it wont be. I believe in miracles. But this news has changed my mentality in a lot of ways.

That said. I would really appreciate if everyone would write ONE things they would want to do if they have 182 1/2 days left to live. Just one. And as long as it’s not too illegal I am going to try and do it. I have my own, and I will share and document and update as I go along. Hopefully this will kind of be fun.

I wrote this before I had my timeline set ahead of me, and I feel the same way now:

When people talk about cancer, they talk about winning. They talk about beating it. I imagine myself in a runners lunge, at the starting line with my left foot pressed hard against the block and my fingertips in red dirt. I imagine my heart racing as I glance to my right to size up my opponent, and gulping as I wait for the doctor to pull the trigger on the pistol to begin the race against time. The problem is I can’t see my opponent. I can’t size up what I am against, or train or practice for better odds. I don’t know if this is a win or lose situation.

I turn to medicine. I turn to doctors who I trustingly allow to poison me in order to make me well again. I check my hair, my eyelashes, my fingernails. Every day. I feel my organs inside of me wishing they could jump ship. I felt better before I knew I had cancer, when my body was riddled with it. And now I’m trading problem for problem, spade for spade.

I try to live my life to the fullest, even before cancer (I have people who will vouch for this). I’ve been called an inspiration. I’ve been called irresponsible. Sometimes my fullest is too full for other who feel I’m reckless with my health. The judgment of those who feel I should be more respectful of the disease that could be killing me slowly. I have no respect for my cancer, and I refuse to.

These medications have made me lose my mind. I try to view my memory loss as endearing, although I know it becomes irritating. I get frustrated with myself on a minute by minute basis, wondering if I’m even the same person anymore. But I can’t remember.

I will not be humbled by this experience, I do not feel small. I feel huge and loud and lucky to have the life I’ve had. And you, the people in it. In my quiet moments I silently ask questions to no one in particular, and know there are no answers.

I will go to my grave as if I were stepping on a soapbox. It will not be a loss, because there was never any winning. In life it’s only a “thanks for playing”

I have a benefit coming up on Feb 12th at the Deuce, and as always you can donate at Paypal to cmarston@asu.edu
Crystal

I hope you feel inspired by her and empowered by her own courage to fill her life with positivity and have fun rather than wallow in fear and self pity.

Her site, http://182days.com/, has been up for about a week now. I want to suggest a few things of you right now.

I want you to actually do a little more than spend just 15 minutes of your time. I think you should spend 15 dollars of your money to make a donation to her too.

She unfortunately is unable to work and does not have the the means to cover what her health care will not take care of. Do her that favor and help her out.

I have no idea who she is but she deserves a favor from strangers. If you for some reason feel a need to find a personal reason to help her that also helps you, do it to prove to yourself that strangers are willing to do such a thing for someone they have never met. I think we can all feel better and sleep a little easier realizing that people, someone, will always be there for you if you need them.

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Colorado Avalanche vs LA Kings 3.26.2011

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It was a really great game. The Kings really did a great job especially, in the face of adversity.

For the second night, one of their star players….this time THE star player…got injured badly.

Anze Kopitar suffered a broken ankle when he was accidentally tripped by O’Byrne on the Avalanche. You can see in one of my photos that Kopitar’s ankle is completely turned around. Unfortunately, he is expected to be out of the lineup for a minimum of six weeks.

Hopefully, the Kings can go on a long playoff run that would allow Kopitar and Williams to return to playing this season.

Click “Continue reading »” below to view all the images. =)
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San Jose Sharks vs LA Kings 3.24.2011

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Another nail biter of a game going down to the very end. The game got tied up with seconds left and had to go to a shoot out again!

Great goalie match up! A couple great power play goals by both team. Real good battles along the boards (no injuries tonight, thankfully).

Oscar Moller did a fantastic job in his first game back in the line up. Hopefully, he stays on the top line and stays healthy. I love his attitude and determination! He’s a small player and has a lot to prove! He’s doing it though!

Click “Continue reading »” below to view all the images. =)
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New Faces: Bonnie and Jacob

Here are two more friends! I love these people =)


Bonnie Kate Hussey <3


Jacob Fatoorechi (Look him up on my blog! He plays with heaps of bands and he is incredible!)

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B12 Deficiency: Why I Lost My Mind

I do not know how much you know about me or how long you have been reading my blog. But, if you have been following things you know that the last few months has been the second worst stretch of time in my life.

The first being the ordeal I went through while living with an insulinoma.

This time the doctors have finally discovered that I have a severe B12 deficiency and it is the root of my neurological and physical problems.

Real quick, From Wikipedia

“Vitamin B12 is a water soluble vitamin with a key role in the normal functioning of the brain and nervous system, and for the formation of blood. It is one of the eight B vitamins. It is normally involved in the metabolism of every cell of the human body, especially affecting DNA synthesis and regulation, but also fatty acid synthesis and energy production.”

Obviously, B12 is some serious shit! It’s as important and necessary as glucose! Which is what I was deficient of when I had the insulinoma and why my brain was fried!

Both of times are rooted in physiological problems caused by chemicals or lack thereof that changes/damages my brain.

Being sick these times…the physical stuff I have experienced is manageable and not that bad to experience. But, it is hard to explain and I feel it is far harder for others to understand just how horrible it is to experience losing your mind.

And, that is exactly what happened. I lost my mind for the second time.

It is really easy for someone on the outside to insist that you are always in control of your thoughts and actions. But, it is not that easy. And, it is not something you can learn to do very quickly.

It is very confusing because you know you are not doing something you would approve of or would otherwise do. It is disorienting because you call into question who you are as a person and what you represent. It is a feeling of helplessness because no matter how hard you fight it and want to do better you rarely notice any forward progress. And, until you find a reason for why it is happening you feel completely hopeless as well because you do not know where or how to fix the problem.

Here is what an insulinoma and what B12 deficiency is and their symptoms-

From Wikipedia:

“An insulinoma is a tumour of the pancreas that is derived from beta cells and secretes insulin.

Beta cells secrete insulin in response to increases in blood glucose. The resulting increase in insulin acts to lower blood glucose back to normal levels at which point further secretion of insulin is stopped. In contrast, the secretion of insulin by insulinomas is not properly regulated by glucose and the tumors will continue to secrete insulin causing glucose levels to fall further than normal.

As a result patients present with symptoms of low blood glucose (hypoglycemia), which are improved by eating. The diagnosis of an insulinoma is usually made biochemically with low blood glucose, elevated insulin, proinsulin and C-peptide levels and confirmed by localising the tumour with medical imaging or angiography. The definitive treatment is surgery.”

Let’s quickly go over what an insulinoma causes (DOT next to what I experienced):

  • Anxiety
  • Behavior changes
  • Clouded vision
  • Confusion
  • Convulsions
  • Dizziness
      Headache
      Hunger
  • Loss of consciousness
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Sweating
  • Tremor
      Weight gain
      Seizures
  • Coma (I would have if I was not pumped with glucose in time in the hospital)
      Permanent Neurological Damage (Maybe. Have not checked into this)

From http://www.labtestsonline.org:

“B12 and folate are B complex vitamins that are necessary for normal red blood cell formation, tissue and cellular repair, and DNA synthesis. A B12 and/or folate deficiency reflects a chronic shortage of one or both of these vitamins. Since the body stores 3 to 5 years worth of B12 and several months’ supply of folate in the liver, deficiencies and their associated symptoms can take months to years to manifest in adults.

A deficiency in B12 can also result in varying degrees of neuropathy, nerve damage that can cause tingling and numbness in the patient’s hands and feet and mental changes that range from confusion and irritability to severe dementia.”

Let’s quickly go over the symptoms of B12 Deficiency(Dot next to what I am experienced):

  • Irritability
  • Focus/concentration problems
  • Depression
  • Poor memory
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms
  • Confusion
  • Paranoia
  • Diarrhea
      Dizziness
  • Fatigue, weakness
      Loss of appetite
      Malabsorption
      Paleness
  • Rapid heart rate
  • Shortness of breath
      Sore tongue and mouth
  • Tingling, numbness, and/or burning in the feet, hands, arms, and legs

As you can see a lot of the symptoms for both are the same. I was freaking out extra hard for a while because I thought I had an insulinoma again. It really alerted to me that I probably have been suffering from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. That’s something I need to explore with a psychologist.

The docs do not know what is causing the deficiency as of yet.

It might be something caused by the PTSD, it might be due to part of my pancreas and intestines being removed with the insulinoma, it might be a form of anemia, or something else. I have a follow up meeting tomorrow to start to figure this out.

With that said though, it really does feel great to know there is something physical causing my mental problems. It is a bit scary though when I think of how serious this is.

I mean, if this was left untreated I would end up with dementia. That is as scary a thought as ending up paralyzed to me.

It is kinda messed up to think of just how wrecked my life has been because of this. Because of a lack of a vitamin. *sigh*

I will update again once I know more about the cause and treatment.

I’m finally seeing some light again. =)

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Goalie Book Project


Matt Hsu


Angelo Arias

I’m shooting photographs for my friend, Matt Hsu, to be used in a book he is creating about goal tending in hockey. It is a beginner guide to all the equipment and proper usage and fit of gear.

I spent most of the day photographing heaps of gear individually on and off of a player. As a bonus I did some quick portraits of Matt and our friend, Angelo Arias suited up fully in their gear.

Posted in photography, portraiture | 2 Comments

New Faces: Brad Crowell and Myke Armstrong

I got to shoot with my new friend, Brad, of Dead Letter Perfect, last week.

It was a total blast. Brad is a photographer in addition to being a talented musician. So, it was a really extra fun experience hearing his insight of the photo shoot.

Be sure to pay attention to his blog. He’s currently working on a 3-song EP and it should be great! I heard the demos and the songs have some really great dynamics to them.

Here is one of my BFFs, Myke Armstrong. He is the CEO and Founder of the newly launched internet start-up, Lissn.com

It is a really fun chat platform in the vein of Omeagle and Chatroulette. It is still being built out and there is a new feature added each week! Be sure to join in on the fun and share your thoughts with “Myke.”

He’s a great guy and fun to talk with!

I’m working on some more Faces right now. So, stay tuned.

=)

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Calgary Flames vs LA Kings 3.21.2011

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What a great game! Total goaltender match! Kipper from the Flames was the 3rd Star of the Game while Quick from the Kings was the 1st Star of the Game.

It was a really competitive and tight game. The only bad thing as a fan was seeing Justin Williams leave with what seemed to be a shoulder injury.

He got checked and was a bit off balance and he went hard into the boards in the wrong way. It was right in front of me =/ He didn’t look too good. No photos of that.

Be sure to check out the magazine I shoot for: The Fourth Period

Click “Continue reading »” below to view all the images. =)
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Anaheim Ducks vs LA Kings 3.19.2011

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It was a great game on Saturday night between the Ducks and the Kings. A good gritty game that went to overtime. There was a couple unfortunate calls that were made and that were not made in the game. Which is a shame. Because, there should be a better system in place to be able to review potential bad calls. One against the Kings cost them an important goal.

The Western Conference is incredibly tight and every game is feeling like playoff games. It’s pretty exciting! I’m extremely exhausted to write more. I have only slept an hour since the game. Woooo.

Be sure to check out the magazine I shoot for: The Fourth Period

Click the link below to view all the images. =)
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Posted in LA Kings, NHL, photography | Tagged , | 1 Comment