Monthly Archives: March 2010

Ring Girl

Sports Model

Ring Girl - Jasmine

I met Jasmine, by total coincidence, days after the Level 4 MMA event where she was a ring girl that night. Fresh off my fighter inspirations, I wanted to capture that ring girl look. Prolifik was more than gracious to provide the studio space for my shoot.

Jasmine was a bright young girl with plenty of sass and energy. She was great to work with and took direction very well. I want to thank her for her inspiration and willingness to indulge in my concepts. My photoshoot with Jasmine was one of my favorites and I hope to continue to work with her in the future.

Check out her portfolio on Model Mayhem.

www.modelmayhem.com/jasminevaleriebrown

Bushido

 

 

MMA Fighter

Van Shiroma

BUSHIDO – “The Way of the Warrior” is the samurai code of conduct. The philosophies and principles of Bushido date back to before the 12th century and stress the laws of honor, obedience, duty, and self-sacrifice. It is this code that allows the violent existence of the samurai to coexist with the wisdom and serenity of Japanese Buddhism.

There was a feeling in the air that things were going to start to snowball for Prolifik when Micah came to me and told me that an amateur mixed martial arts fighter that he endorsed and supported was going to be fighting at Level 4 nightclub. T-Shirts were being printed and the crew at HMC Academy (Hawaii Martial Arts Center) were gearing up.

Micah and I are both Okinawan and we were going to be in the corner of Van Shiroma, another fellow Uchinanchu. Though I had not met Shiroma yet, his friends had told me he was a soft spoken young man, very humble and kind.

The Level 4 event had scheduled more than 30 cards that night, starting at four in the afternoon and going well into the late night. The place was at capacity and I had to wait in line for nearly two hours to get into the place. Finally in, I was surprised to see a crew of what had to be 30 supporters. SHIROMA in bright red swarmed near the main bar and I felt a sense of camaraderie as I threw on my shirt as well. He went on to win his match that night and was congratulated by hoards of support members shortly thereafter.

His reputation preceding him, Shiroma was more than gracious to accept my request for a photo shoot. I was eager to meet his other team members at the Academy as well. When we met up back at Prolifik several nights later, I met a teammate of his, Justin Wong who had also agreed to take part. Wong brought about a very calm, even-keeled presence with him. It was clear to me that these young men were very disciplined and centered individuals. I was honored to work with both Shiroma and Wong and hope that these images captured their strength within. In my experience, the men from HMC Academy exhibit everything that is “Bushido”.

Pursue Excellence

Prolifik

Prolifik Projects

In high school, I found that filmmaking was an addicting medium to express my creative side. It was a goal of mine to become a successful film auteur, writing, shooting, and directing my own films. Filmmaking is a collaborative process and I soon found it to be difficult to find people who bought in to my ideas and concepts. I then learned that photography can be much more self gratifying. I didn’t have to rely or depend on others. My ideas. My time. My rules.

In my return stint in Hawaii, I reconnected with my lifetime buddy, Micah. We’ve spent the better half (childhood) of our lives fishing in streams, playing video games and getting into mischief. Now, 20 plus years of sleepovers, movie nights, Mario Kart marathons, and WWF Pay-Per-View Events later, I consider him family.

I always knew Micah had a creative spirit. He helped me paint posters when I ran for class president in the sixth grade. We made designs together in woodshop in high school. Over the past two years, Micah has been building his clothing line called Prolifik Projects. Inspired and driven by The Faith, Micah has created an amazing vehicle for starving artists in Hawaii to express themselves. His only rule when you enter his shop, leave your ego at the door and always seek to inspire and support others and their artforms.

Spending much time at Prolifik, I was able to share my work with others and find support from places I didn’t expect. I was excited when Micah asked me to help create images to promote his product, however I was a little nervous to collaborate again after working solo for so long.

We definitely have different ways of expressing our creative side, but on a brisk February night in 2010 we came together for five hours to produce some brilliant images that I felt convey the essence of Prolifik. Different people, different backgrounds, coming together under one banner that is Prolifik, all with one goal in mind, to “Pursue Excellence”.