In the summer of 2016, I found myself as the photographic spokesperson for a number of black and black-supporting people in Seattle. I'd made a couple of friends that summer who were passionate, and affected, by the things that were happening around them. The Black Lives Matter movement called to them, gave them an outlet to express the anger and frustration and despair they had for the things going on in cities all over the country.
The young man with the flag made dozens of phone calls to both friends and media outlets, pulling together what he called a "silent rally", where instead of loud chants he wanted photos, the capture of moments as they gathered and marched. He got a reasonable number of people to gather, and got a couple of local TV stations to come out and interview him and other people at the rally.
The photos below give you a little bit of a feel for the atmosphere and the passion. At the same time, there were moms and dads there, with very young to teenage kids. There was love, tempered by the fear shown in the cover photo - "Am I Next?
I owe a lot to the people I met that summer. They helped me to realize I wanted to get involved, and that the camera was a great way to represent them - their emotions, their strength, their courage. I continue to go to events. Recently the Seattle Police Department shot a black woman who had called them for help. The racial divide is not getting smaller, and the problems affect people in my city just as much as in cities around the country. I hope my photography can help to give another perspective and another face to the problems.