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My Favorite Things About NYC

As presented to a kindergarten class.

Today I did my first photography presentation to a K-5 class in Southern Tucson.

I’ve been subbing and yesterday, I had a conversation with teacher about where we were before Tucson. When I shared about Harlem, she mentioned that her lesson plan this week included a comparison storyline between New York City and the small town of Alden in Upstate New York. She then asked if I would mind speaking to her class about my time in New York City. I immediately said, yes and, “I’ll bring some pictures!”

Well life being what it is, I didn’t have time to sort through thousands of images on my hard drive to select what I considered to be kid-friendly – food, animals, parks, etc. When I got to school today, I stopped by Ms. Joseph’s class to tell her I hadn’t had time to search my photos the night before. She was like, “No, problem, just talk.” I immediately saw that I wasn’t getting out of the K-5 presentation I had agreed to. On the way back to my first post of the day, I realize I had a photo archive in my pocket on my Instagram feed.

The classroom equipment in this school is sort of space-age in my opinion. Computers, laptops, a transparency projecting machine that looks like a reading light! I’ve been hard-pressed not to let my awe show. Because of the excellent classroom tech, I realized I could simply connect my phone to the teacher’s workspace to project my images on the white board at the front of the class.

It all went off without a hitch and now I’m a hit with the five year-olds! 🙂 I can’t tell you how they made my day! Later, in the halls, at lunch and during end of day dismissal, they and their teacher, made sure to tell me how much they enjoyed my presentation, which pictures were their favorites and how others should get to see them as well.

So here, I am sharing some more. All images below were taken for my real estate IG account @ljonesrealtor. Connect with me there.

The skyline, architecture and buildings have individual and combined stories.

I LOVE Central Park!

Brooklyn Bridge Park is like a state secret

Harlem is part of my heart.

Lady Liberty represents the spirit of the City

ALL I REALLY NEED TO KNOW about how to live and what to do
and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not
at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the

sandpile at Sunday School. These are the things I learned:

Share everything.
Play fair.
Don’t hit people.
Put things back where you found them.
Clean up your own mess.
Don’t take things that aren’t yours.
Say you’re sorry when you hurt somebody.
Wash your hands before you eat.
Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
Live a balanced life, learn some and think some
and draw and paint and sing and dance and play
and work every day some.

from All I Really Need To Know I Learned In Kindergarten
by Robert Fulghum
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Bold Black Beautiful Photo Shoot

On June 24, 2018, Renata Cardenas, an author and beauty entrepreneur known by her lifestyle brand, Renata Del Carmen, hosted a photo shoot for Black Women in Brooklyn Bridge Park for her BOLD BLACK BEAUTIFUL project. Her goal was to create beautiful images of Black Women that would represent standards of beauty as stock photography on the internet. On her Eventbrite post Renata wrote, “Out of curiousity I googled, “Beautiful Woman.” I simply wanted to know what the cyber world at large considered beautiful. While I can totally apprecitae a good algorithm, I was certain that they missed the mark that day. I didn’t see any women that looked like me. Not even Beyonce.”

The I AM WOMAN project is born from a similar space. LaShawnda Jones (author/publisher for Spirit Harvest and photographer for SH Images) was tired of the negative images of Black Women in the media. She was exhausted from witnessing the abuse of Black Women perpetrated throughout society because they are rarely seen as worthy of respect and decent treatment. She wants to combat these situations with images and words of Black Women representing themselves by sharing their own experiences of womanhood in their own words.

Renata’s inspiration and goals for BOLD BLACK BEAUTIFUL are very similar to the I AM WOMAN project. Seeing a great opportunity to connect and possibly build towards a partnership, LaShawnda reached out to Renata and asked if she could do back-up photography during the BOLD BLACK BEAUTIFUL photo shoot and share information about her own project with the BBB participants. Renata graciously said yes and a great day of creative synergy and amazing feminine energy was shared by all present – including the male supporters and photographers.

The lack of recognition, respect and love Black Women receive in the cyber and public spears has spurred an amazing response from Black Women who see themselves and each other as the beautiful beings they are. Cheers to sisterhood, solidarity and the determination to create nurturing spaces in a world that perfers not to see you.


Renata Del Carmen on being a Life Style R


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Image gallery from the BOLD BLACK BEAUTIFUL photo shoot


More information on Renata Del Carmen:

More information on LaShawnda Jones: