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Childrens Hopes

Karise Allen

Life is so fulfilling when you are able to give love to someone, or help someone to accomplish their Hopes and dreams in life. I  was mentor for 2 days with Pontiac Buick GMC and Linda Solomon, a world renowned photographer in helping young children find their hopes in life.

The children were taught photography techniques, such as angles, where to stand when taking photos, the difference between a vertical and a horizontal photograph, and the importance of focusing on something and capturing the true essence of what it is they hope for.

You would be amazed to hear some of the things the children hoped for, one child hoped for the world to come together and form a unity among the different races, the child then photographed kids of different complexions holding hands. “ I hope for my family to be closer”, raven 10 years old said. These children will focus their lenses on what they want their world to be when they grow up.  As I followed the group I mentored around, I could see how the Children were able to express themselves through their lenses, they asked several questions as well as helped one another with creative ideas through the process.

“ It is amazing how intelligent the kids are, the way they were able to arrange their thoughts and express them by going through the Salvation army and finding things that may express there hopes”. Says Mariah". One of the girls I mentored, said I was her role Model which filled my heart with an abundance of joy. Look how serious he is in writing down his hopes.

Stylist, Make-up artist, hair dresser- wait a minute I thought I was the Photographer

Karise Allen

As a creative person, I am always looking for ways to fix, solve, or just create beauty.  While I was living in the DR, I had the honor of photographing Jessie and Svens wedding.  This was during a very sensitive time in DR, right after the earthquake and were racial biasis were on the forefront of every conversation, Hatians were being deported left and right but despite all of the chaos Jessie who is hatian and Svens found love.  2 weeks before her wedding date we drove around the DR looking for her dress, shoes and jewelry, she spoke no english and very little spanish, at a time when This was a busy day for me, I did hair, make-up and took photographs for Jessie and  Svens wedding.  2 weeks before the wedding, I helped the Hatian bride find her dress.  It was a beautiful day as Sosua La Playa. Congrats Sven and Jessie!

Love is…..

Karise Allen

Learning how to use the view camera at The Art Institute were I received my associates degree.

Learning how to use the view camera at The Art Institute were I received my associates degree.

I have had a love affair with Photography for over 10 years now.  I knew Photography was one of my true loves; along with RTVF, communication, design, painting, jazz, entrepreneurship and helping people. (I am a multi passionate when it comes to the things I LOVE)

I felt I understood true love until one dreadful night. While staying at a friend’s house North Philadelphia, I was awakened abruptly from studying all night, to 3 unglued faces, with glassy eyes and disorganized gazes. I was confused by the looks on their faces. I rubbed my eyes, and slapped my face to gain visual clarity, and the first words that whispered out of my mouth were, "Is everything ok?”  My friend said No, I need to talk to you about something.  Can you come outside? I begin to feel my heart beating against my rib cage rapidly. We walked to the top of the stairs to head outside. He immediately glanced over to the area where my car had been parked and embraced me. He  proceeded to tell me that my car had been stolen.  What Oh No, I thought, WHAT…They cut through my club on my steering wheel?"  I started thinking it was no big deal; it’s just my car! We will call the cops, the bandits will be caught, and everything will work out….

Then I screamed with every available octave in my vocal chords; MY PHOTO EQUIPMENT!!! I begin to weep. My knees buckled and I dropped to the floor. I started to remember just how hard I had worked to obtain every piece of equipment!  Everything from cameras, lights, soft boxes, umbrellas and even back drops.  My radio equipment was also in the trunk of my car.  All these things I’ve obtained since college, so it was pretty rough to accept. I sacrificed missing tons of parties, traveling, and other things college students did for fun.”  I begin to think to myself, that I was an idiot for not taking my precious photo equipment out of my car after a photo shoot. Why didn’t I get insurance on my equipment? How crazy was I for just having liability insurance on my car?  All these  boggled thoughts went on in  my mind for days.  

As time went by, tthe gray cloud begin to darken.  The police were unable to find my car.  Everything I worked for to fuel that passion inside of me was gone!  At that very second, I thought love couldn’t be real! Whatever this passion or idea that seemed to be harvesting in my brain, was just a bunch of dog poop scooped up and dumped in the trash. It seemed like everything I loved or was passionate about was only a figmente of my imagination!

I felt like every time my life would move forward, I would be forced to take a step back.  I started to feel like with all the time and money I invested that it wasn’t meant for me to pursue anything I loved! Before photography, it was radio television and film, prior to that, it was painting and design. I just knew that the universe was telling me that this vision or love affair I had going inside my head, would never amount to anything. 

My fears kicked in and my love life was truly over.  All the gifts I felt like I possessed, and loved, died.

From there. I started having a plethora of flings with temporary things, just to pass time. I was trapped by fear.  I no longer trusted love.  I felt like I had invested in photography school, equipment, and even went to school for communications to learn multiple ways to merge photography with media. I had hoped that the police would catch the culprits.  Instead they told me that my car was one the top 5 cars to be high jacked and chopped up for spare parts.  “Lucky for me”, Yeah!!!!! (In my extremley sarcastic voice)  

My heart was broken, but it was mended back together by positive thinking, growth, maturity and understanding that with adversity  comes strength, wisdom, perseverence and determination.  These are all great qualities to develop when growing your own business.  Being able to be a Visual Communicator,  breathes from my pores like air to the earth.  Just like in love, things occur and you work to get over them, which in turn creates a relationship full of love and understanding.  Just because you are hurt or discouraged, doesn’t mean you give up on your true love. Put Your Love on TOP!!!!

NOLA Inspiration

Karise Allen

While in New Orleans, not only was the culture, and history an inspiration, but a really special friend who is also a photographer and writer L.Kasimu Harris, was a wonderful tour guide, and took me to all the amazing jazz spots, and explained the true culture of New Orleans to me. We had an amazing time on our walkabout with our camera's in our hands inspiring one another