All photographic images on this site are for sale as 13" x 19'' and larger archival fine art prints. Image rights are also for sale. Books and CDs too. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org for details. I won't bite.
I was just at a Starbuck's buying an Egg Nog Latte, when a homeless woman came in and asked the clerk, "Do you have anything for just a dollar?"
I'm not struggling like her obviously, but as my father used to say, "It's not what you make but what you spend." And having my own business, Fezziwig Press, costs money and my little company isn't making enough money right now.
So I'm doing an Amanda Fucking Palmer thing. If I don't ask, you don't know to give.
Fezziwig Press and I have been struggling financially for the last year or so. Namely, I'm not quite breaking even, still a few hundred dollars in the red each month, even with my part time counseling gig and all. I'm making some sales with image rights, book sales, music sales, etc, but not like I did five to ten years ago. So I'm putting out the artistic begging bowl. And I'm giving shit away.
The Transpersonal Papers (1861-2010) was released in 2011. Cost a boat load to produce but I only sold seven ebook copies. (Thank you to the seven, by the way.) So I'm offering it today, to you all, for free.
If you like The Transpersonal Papers, or the StuBlog, or my work, I ask that you give a little money to my Paypal account. My log-in is my email address, stujenks at gmail dot com, spelled like you normally would type it. Donate to my Paypal, or buy some books, or send money to P.O.Box 161, Tucson, AZ 85702. Whatever you like. No expectations, but if I don't ask, you don't know. And of course, if you don't give, that's perfectly all right too. We're all tight these days, don't I know. Or you just might not like my stuff that much. It's all good, as the kids say. Except for my ever-shrinking savings account.
I hope you enjoy the photographs and the stories in this book. Perhaps someday I'll have enough money to print it as a large coffee table book, like it was originally envisioned. Perhaps not, but you can have it right now for free. Enjoy.
"The Blessing Hoops, Coalmine Canyon, Navajo/Hopi Joint Use Area, Arizona" (c) 2012 Stu Jenks
3G has hit the Rez. I was actually texting and talking on the phone, at times, while shooting on Wednesday night. You might think that might be distracting but it was nice and then became deeply meaningful.
At one point, one of the friends I was texting, asked if I would ask the Spirit of Coalmine Canyon to bless her children. How touching. Of course, I texted back. (I won't say who she was, but it's not who my closest friends might think. Another mother.)
So I prayed to the Canyon, asking for Blessings and Love for her and for her children. And then I prayed for other children, and for other friends, and for people I don't call friend, and for people who are stangers to me. Blessings. Love. Blessings. Love. I cried. It was very nice.
After prayers, I danced with my Christmas hoop lights along a tall fin of white mud rock. This is the image that came from that dance and from those prayers.
"Hoop Dancing With Ghosts, Coalmine Canyon, Navajo/Hopi Joint Use Area, Arizona" (c) 2012 Stu Jenks
Here's what you are supposed to do, though nothing bad will happen to you if you don't. Thousands now haven't done this one thing and I'm assuming they are still alive. It's perhaps just a superstition. Or maybe not.
A good friend was studying with a Navajo medicine man years ago. His teacher told my friend that before you enter Coalmine Canyon you should always ask permission of the Spirits. My friend then told me. Over the last 25 years of coming here, I have asked. Sometime it says no. Most times it say yes. Night before last, I forgot to ask all together until after I had entered.
"Oh," I said to the Canyon, in the fading twilight, "Sorry. I forgot. Can I come in?
"Sure," said the Canyon, "but do not spend the night. Leave before 10 p.m."
"No kidding," I said. "Leave before 10?"
And the Canyon said nothing else.
I shot for four hours and was back on pavement by 10 p.m.
On full moon nights, Navajo and Hopi holy men alike say that ghosts dance on the walls of the Canyon. I believe they did Wednesday night.
(Geek note: I've had this happen before, shooting at night with black and white film, but never with a color digital negative.The above image is a perfect exposure, at least for my tastes. The length of time, the saturation of the color, the whites and blacks, lights and darks and midtones, and other colors are just, well, perfect. I fiddled with the image for about 15 minutes in CS5, but always came back to the original digital negative. So what you see here is precisely what is on the neg. All I did was cropped the neg a hair, rotate the image 2 degrees to the right and put a black line around the whole thing. Now, don't get me wrong. I did this hoop dance about 7 times to get the Christmas light circles right, but that was for the structure of the five hoops. I just educated-guessed on the density, on the exposure time, and lo and behold, I got it just right on the best dance of the night. It's never happened before with a digital negative. I consider that a very good sign, from a very good night of hoop dancing with ghosts at Coalmine Canyon.)
From top to bottom: "Dinosaur Tracks, We're Open, Navajo Reservation, Arizona", "C.J.'s Fault, Dripping Springs, Arizona", "White Prayer Point (with truck), Hopi Reservation, Arizona", "Dawn at White Prayer Point, Hopi Reservation, Arizona", and "Coal Mine Canyon at Mid Morning, Arizona". All images (c) 2012 Stu Jenks
I like to talk. Ask anyone. I'm not going to say much here. Here's a wikipedia excerpt about the place.
"Human artifacts have been found on or near Bear Butte that date back 10,000 years, indicating a long and continuous interest in the mountain.The Cheyenne and Lakota people have maintained a spiritual interest in Bear Butte from their earliest recorded history.
Notable visitors like Red Cloud, Crazy Horse, and Sitting Bull made pilgrimages to the site. In 1857, a council of many Indian nations gathered at Bear Butte to discuss the growing presence of white settlers in the Black Hills.
Violating a treaty of 1868, George Armstrong Custer led an expedition to the Black Hills region in 1874, and according to custom he camped near Bear Butte. Custer verified the rumors of gold in the Black Hills, and Bear Butte then served as an easily identifiable landmark for the rush of invading prospectors and settlers into the region. Indian reaction to the illegal movements of whites into the area was intense and hostile. Ultimately the government reneged on its treaty obligations regarding the Black Hills and instead embarked on a program to confine all northern Plains tribes to reservations.
Ezra Bovee homesteaded on the southern slopes of the mountain, and by the time of World War II, he and his family were the legal owners of the site. In the spring of 1945, the Northern Cheyenne received permission from Bovee to hold a ceremony at Bear Butte to pray for the end of World War II. The Cheyenne found that the Bovee family welcomed their interest in the mountain, and over the years the Bovees continued to encourage native religious ceremonies.
By the mid-1950s Ezra Bovee was attempting to stir up interest in making Bear Butte a national park. After his death, his family continued the effort. When federal interest in the project waned, the state government in Pierre took action, and Bear Butte became a state park in 1961 and was registered as a National Historic Landmark in 1965.
Frank Fools Crow, the Lakota ceremonial chief (d. 1989), made pilgrimages to Bear Butte throughout his lifetime. Fools Crow taught racial harmony not just between whites and Indians, but among all the peoples of the world. He believed the Lakota should never sell the Black Hills. A bust and plaque in front of the education center at Bear Butte State Park honor Fools Crow’s efforts." - Wikipedia.