Photography for Social Change, Spring 2016

The following images were drawn from the final portfolios in my Chaminade University class, Photography for Social Change, Spring 2016. The class is an introduction to photography with an emphasis on using the camera as an instrument to reveal social issues or to assist in seeking positive solutions to the problems which vex us all.

—David Ulrich

Kim Barroga
Waimanalo, is a city in the district of Ko’olaupoko on the island of Oahu. Ko’olaupoko is the southeastern district of the windward coast Oahu, from Kualoa in the north to Waimanalo in the south. (“Ko’olau” means “windward”; “poko” means “small”). This small windward community is located near the eastern end of the island. The land in which I live and have resided for 21 years is dearly important to me. In regards to my final portfolio, I will present different areas within the town that will give viewers an inside look of what makes Waimanalo continue to prosper and grow. My hopes at the end of this portfolio, is to provide the viewers an insight of appreciation and recognition to not only Waimanalo but back to the land from which they are from.

Ches Bond
Do people have an idea what happiness is in their lives? After all, the pursuit of happiness is a strong motivator in the lives of people. How many issues could stem from the simple issue of happiness? I began to survey people at random and was shocked at what I found. Some people have very clear, thoughtful answers to the question of “what is happiness?” and some people answered cynically, sarcastically, or have no clue what happiness is. What I hope to get across with these photos is a picture of the current understanding of happiness in the world.

Samantha Brooks
My portfolio is called “Ku’u Home.” It is a full reflection of the place that I grew up in. I grew up in Waianae, Hawaii on the west side of Oahu. This portfolio became a lot more personal throughout the course of it’s compilation. There are pictures from my own neighborhood and of my actual neighbors and friends. .  I wanted to show that there is beauty in Waianae and there is more to the people than fighting, drugs and alcohol abuse. My goal was to show that the things I see every day are some of the most beautiful in the world.

Sheehan Chase
For my final portfolio I attempt to capture our addiction to cell phones and technology. Many of us spend far too much time on such devices that it limits the amount of actual human interaction we have. This is unnatural and far from the upbringing of our ancestors. I believe this issue is a growing epidemic as the problem is now effecting our youth on a fundamental level. Mothers use cell phones and iPad’s as a pacifier substitute for their children. Yes, literacy rates are at an all-time high in the Unites States, but at what cost?

Madison Choi
When thinking about Hawaii, the first images that come to mind for most people are the white sandy beaches, the beautiful sunsets, and the lush plant life the islands have to offer. While these postcard-perfect sights are lovely and quintessential Hawaii, I would like to convey through my portfolio the beauty found in the diverse ethnic and cultural makeup of the island of Oahu. The islands are known for displaying aloha spirit and, ultimately, I hope my portfolio will encourage people of different ethnicities and cultures to live in harmony with one another.

Thomas Collins
This project is an in depth look at the natural spirituality of Hawaii and its connection to the land as well as the encroachment of civilization onto that land. I have tried to show the impact of civilization as a cause for the decline by photographing spiritual places of Hawaii as roads and cities are slowly overrunning them. It is my hope that these photos will shed light on the epidemic of consumer based advancement that Is slowly beginning to erode away the beliefs of a culture that came before, both physically and spiritually. It is time to wake the sleeping giant that is Hawaii and stand up against the destruction of something so beautiful.

Jolica Domdom
For my photography portfolio, I wanted to focus my theme on the idea that we have turned into a generation that is obsessed with having more than we need. It has caused us to be somewhat of a chaotic society that is always striving to have the best of the best. I wanted to capture images that portrayed just how crazy a life of a consumerist can get. Consumerism means more than just obtaining material objects, it is also what we consume in our minds and everyday lives. Some of the pictures I took not only captured the obvious idea of consumerism, which is going to the mall and shopping but also the idea that we have become a generation consumed by technology.

Rohndell Goodwin
Throughout my pictures you will see photos of student athletes studying, practicing, and preparing for their opponent not only to play in games, but to travel across the country to play. I would like to change the views on how people look at student athletes throughout the world. Student athletes must balance roles of being a full-time athlete and student. For instances if a student doesn’t maintain a 2.0 g.p.a., the student could lose their scholarship.  Academics is part of a student; to keep up grades in the classroom and keep up performance in the sport that they are participating in. It’s the many things you have to do to balance out everything in life.

Ryan Look
My topic for my portfolio is “view of a sports fan.” I am a big fan of sports and show tons of passion towards my teams (Angels, 49ers, LA Galaxy, Chaminade, LA Kings) whenever they play. I want other people to see what my life is like when I go to games and to get them to be as passionate as myself. My photos reflect things that I notice at each game or things I like to do during a game whether it is cheering or dancing for a dance cam. I believe my photos represent the people who don’t know each other that can all come together and cheer on a team and forget about the struggles of the day only having to worry about the team’s success.

Dan Mangum
My portfolio reaches out to the different personalities that fill up Waikiki and Honolulu Hawaii and how they ultimately bring a unique and unforgettable feeling to those of us who visit and live here. As it is simple to go for clichés like the Hawaiian sunset it is more difficult to capture the people of Waikiki. I am here to tell you that they play a unique role in making Hawaii the great place that it is and that they significantly impact the city life

Amber Manuel
‘Ohana, or family, is one of the most important aspects of life in the Hawaiian culture. It serves as the foundation where values and life lessons are learned and as a support system that will always be there. The theme for this portfolio is my ‘ohana. My intent for these photos is to show the love and bond between members of a Hawaiian family. Whether it is playing in the backyard, eating or holding a baby, all these moments represent what my family values from each other.

Grant Okazaki
You wouldn’t know it by looking at these pictures, but these people struggle each day. Each are struggling against time and sickness, hopelessness, money, and knowledge. These pictures don’t represent the suffering, but instead display the positive aspects of wisdom, vitality, and hope while entrapped by the casing of their own bodies. Pictures represent the idea of capturing moments of lives who aren’t represented in any other form. I chose to showcase these four people to have their lives represented in the light their normal lives don’t allow. We see the transition through life and through the generations.

Jenny Paleracio
Through this project I have captured Asians in their working environment. Specifically I focused on two areas: Chinatown, Honolulu and a little farm on the island of Kaua’i. . I hope that my portfolio will reveal to people that Asian workers deserve as much credit as any other worker. Most of the Asian workers in Chinatown had to go through many struggles; learning English as a second language, moving away from their home to start a business, and adjusting to a new place outside of their comfort zone. Through my portfolio, I captured the work ethic of Asian’s to showcase that they should be recognized and not neglected.

Jason Perez
In today’s society, the thought of having the perfect body is seen everyday. In advertisements such as Calvin Klein and Hollister. This “perfect body” interpretation begins at an early age. Everybody is beautiful, no matter what you have. Whether you have deep scars, acne, marks or tattoos. This makes the person you are today. I want those who view these images to see the comfort and the state of peace that my subjects have with their body. In the past my subjects have struggled with body image due to these false standards, but now they have seen who they truly are, a beautiful person.

Alice Potter
I initially thought to take pictures of women and men and how they struggle with their self-image, particularly body image—capturing their pain and self-loathing. Through this challenge I discovered something much more powerful. I found the living witnesses—women have gone through some terrible things in their past who showed me how strong they were. Passionate, optimistic, challenging, insightful, affectionate… are only a few words to describe them. There should not be one common standard of female specimen that people attempt to follow like a recipe book, and neither should we fear or promote the negative features of an individual. A woman’s body image should be of her own design; she should rejoice in her own achievement.