Holi Moli!

Added on by Carolyn Van Houten.

More than 2,500 students celebrate spring by throwing colors in the air at the annual Holi Moli event on Polk Place at UNC Chapel Hill's campus on April 5, 2013.  The mission of Holi Moli is to promote multiculturalism and diversity through the Hindu holiday of Holi.  The funds from the event, which is put on by many campus organizations, go towards organizations such as the Bhutanese Empowerment Fund, the Mahatma Gandhi Fellowship, and Student Government's Student Enrichment Fund.  

Last year, I had 5 minutes, wearing a fancy dress, to shoot this amazing event...from the outside.  I was not prepared and I chickened out of getting in the fray in preference of gear protection.  This year, I found out about it last minute as I was stuck in traffic driving back from Raleigh and decided that I wasn't going to make it in time.  As I was unloading my car, my camera was staring up at me longingly as if to say, "Mom, you haven't shot for yourself in a while and you'd be crazy not to go."  So, I threw on an old shirt, Saran Wrapped and gaff taped my camera to oblivion, and sprinted out the door.  I had missed the very epic beginning, but I managed to get these frames below.  I learned a few things though:

1. Don't Saran Wrap and gaff tape so much that you can't change your exposure.

2. If you are clean looking, people will attack you with massive amounts of dye no matter how large your camera.

3. The middle of the action is where the photos are every single time (even if you are testing your insurance policy). 

4. Never waste time questioning whether or not you should shoot.  Shoot for the sheer joy of it. 

Sometimes its hard for me to remember why I do this.  I shoot for publications.  I shoot for clients.  I shoot for classes.  I shoot for long term projects.  But why do I shoot? Because I adore it with all of my heart.  Getting into a visual situation with no real agenda reminded me of that.  

I decided to get creative with the natural light and shot this portrait a bit hot, letting the background blow out completely.  Just an experiment.

I decided to get creative with the natural light and shot this portrait a bit hot, letting the background blow out completely.  Just an experiment.

DSC_9350.jpg