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Many of my post may be filled with typos, ignorant statements, untruths, bad English, & anything else that may make me appear to be uneducated. Please note: all of these things combined make my Blog the perfect one, because you know I have issues & I am not ashamed. With this said; enjoy, fuck mistakes & read between the lines!

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Archive for the 'BygFamily' Category

Welcome to the Humble Ranch

Author: Tafari, Wednesday, May 27th, 2015 at 10:39 PM Mindspill

Last week, I hosted my first official [housewarming] party of the year at my new home, the Humble Ranch. So many of my family & friends came out to celebrate this awesome life event with me.

It was a simple affair complete with excellent texture, color, design, drink, & food mixed with African flair.

Everybody knows that I'm all about a fun party flyer so for this occasion I decided to use a few vignettes from my home as a background to spread the word. With many of my friends not seeing my home before the party, the flyers offered a sneak peek into my life & design esthetic.

As you can see, the set was 4-8pm but things lasted much longer & it was all good. People love a good party, including me!

I'm so appreciative of the wonderful people that I have in my life, they really showed your boy some tremendous love!

I've been in my new home now for almost 4 months and it's honestly THE best home that I've ever lived as an adult for so many reasons.

As a matter of fact: The top image was taken with my Nikon DSLR, the last two were taken with my iPhone 6. Mindspill Mindspill

When Momma Visits

Author: Tafari, Tuesday, March 24th, 2015 at 2:09 PM Mindspill

My momma came for a visit recently & I was so very happy to see her, smell her, touch her… Having her in my new home for the first time made the visit extra special. I needed her official stamp of approval that only a mother could give. After she got settled in & before the rest of my family showed up, I said, momma, get ready for your official photograph. She disappeared for a few moments then reemerged like a phoenix from the ashes. All I could saw was damn. Then the photo above happened. You can see a color version of the photo on my Flickr page here. I loved everything about what she was giving the camera. She owned it without any effort. What I really loved about it was that the photo of my momma reminded me of “Afro Goddess With Hand Between Legs, 2006” by Mickalene Thomas but much less provocative. It was a wonderful Sunday afternoon filled with love, food & laughter. A supreme family day in black & white, just because. Mindspill Mindspill Mindspill Mindspill Mindspill Mindspill Mindspill

Believe it or not, all of these photos were taken & edited on my iPhone 6.

Beautiful Baby Boy

Author: Tafari, Tuesday, March 17th, 2015 at 7:06 PM Mindspill

Several months ago, I posted about Cousin Dee & her husband, Mato readying themselves for their 1st baby.  Well… Mato Jr. is here & he’s awesome! The day he was born was such an emotional rush. Beautiful! We took these photos recently and I swear this is THE last baby that I will photograph. It took no less than 3 hours to get him calmed down & sleep.  I think I said this the last time I photographed a baby, so there’s that. I’m so very happy for Cousin Dee & Mato and I’m looking forward to baby Mato calling me Uncle Baba TT. Mindspill

Living In Peace

Author: Tafari, Monday, March 2nd, 2015 at 3:14 PM Mindspill

"Anger, can make you old, yes it can I said anger, can make you sick, children... oh Jesus Anger destroys your soul Rage, there's no room for rage in there There's no room for rage in here Line up some place to go to be mad It's a sin to treat your body bad" Marvin Gaye - Anger ~ 1979 I choose to live in peace because it takes little to no effort & it makes me happy. My heart is open & there is plenty of room for love. Anger will kill. Anger will destroy. Anger will eat you alive. Anger will block your growth. Let it go & free yourself. Easier said than done but it is doable. I'm living proof.

Happy at Home

Author: Tafari, Friday, February 20th, 2015 at 3:08 PM Mindspill

Three years ago, I made a plan to purchase a home. Last week, the plan materialized & I'm beyond happy. Staying committed to the plan was a little rough as I had to really resift my priorities to make things happen but it was worth all of the sacrifices. Waking up to a home drenched in sunlight, covered in love is where my happiness stems from! I've never been a morning person but I find myself waking up early to enjoy the quiet peace of my new home. Still kinda feels like a dream; a great dream in my dream home.

She’s Having A Baby: The Allen Family

Author: Tafari, Friday, November 7th, 2014 at 6:17 PM Mindspill

My cousin, best best best friend, Cousin Dee is having a baby!!! She broke the news several months ago and it was the best news ever. Of course, I had to photograph this wonderful moment in my family's history. The image above is my absolute favorite from our little session. We were joking and sing some T-Pain song and we both just burst out laughing. Not to put myself out there too much but I just recently discover T-Pain's music & that's because of a story on NPR. You have to see this video. I love it! Like for real…. Can't wait to meet my little cousin/nephew. I already have a nick name… Uncle Baba TT. I hate it. I hate it so much but it's pretty damn funny. Mindspill Mindspill Mindspill Mindspill

Me & The Boys

Author: Tafari, Saturday, April 12th, 2014 at 5:24 PM Mindspill

My nephews came over for a visit recently and from the picture above, you can still see snow on the ground despite being early spring. I convinced them to take photos in the freezing cold. Luckily, I was quick and they take Girl Scout Cookies for bribes. Love these guys to death & they totally remind me of my brother Topot and I when we were young boys. One super silly & full of personality (Topot & Asar) the other reserved and mischievous (Tony & I). Mindspill Mindspill

She’s Having A Baby

Author: Tafari, Monday, September 2nd, 2013 at 9:35 PM Mindspill

When my best friends, Brion & Chonda announced they were having a baby this year, I was so very excited for them!!! Then my excitement turned to maternity photography to help them document this special time in their lives. I'm looking forward to meeting their son OR daughter (they decided to be surprised)! Next, I have to convince them to do newborn photos. Mindspill

See a couple more outtakes here Make up by Sondra Lewis    

My Brother: My First Friend

Author: Tafari, Wednesday, August 28th, 2013 at 10:55 AM Mindspill

I wrote this story about my brother months ago but was afraid to post it but with many stories out about mentally ill citizens, I found the courage. --------------------------------------------------- My Brother, my first friend, has always been special to me. Growing up, it seemed like I was the only person who understood him. When he would talk, it was like no one knew what he was saying and would often asked me what he was saying or trying to say. I always understood him perfectly. Although he was my best friend and brother, I used to get mad when we were kids and I would attempt to leave the house to play with my friends and my momma would say, “Take your brother with you.” As we entered our teens, we went our separate ways socially. Topot became much more outgoing and popular. When he entered high school, all of the sudden I became his cousin. That’s what he told people. He was TOO cool to be my brother I guess. But in his first couple of years in high school even with his popularity, he became different and it came and went. I did not understand this change in him. Eventually he started talking in different voices, had severe mood shifts and his sleeping pattern changed. Later he was diagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic. This was a familiar term to me because my grandmother, “Mommie,” suffered with the same illness for many, many years. It’s brutal…. With the help of medication, Topot got much better and was back to himself. We went back to being normal but only when he took his meds consistently. As he got older, he was not as keen on taking pills to make him “normal” and this started his journey that would take him away from our family. Fast forward to today…. When I see him, I recognize him but not as my little brother and my friend. He’s different, despondent, disconnected from reality, in his own shadow world of happiness fueled by nicotine, blank stares and self-soothing behaviors. He reminds me of the homeless guys you see downtown in any city, kinda minding his own business, sometimes in your face begging for money. It hurts to see him this way. We’ve tried every avenue available. There is usually success for a while but then it always slips back. On one of the last occasions I saw Topot, he looked into my eyes but all I saw was this blank stare. I felt his eyes should have connected with mine but the forces in his head created difficulty. Having a loved one who’s dealing with a severe mental health issues is daunting. Not a joke. Certainly heartbreaking!

I Love My Momma

Author: Tafari, Sunday, May 12th, 2013 at 2:38 PM Mindspill

My mother, Stella and I around 1986, maybe 1987. My cousin recently sent me this photo and it put such a smile on my face. I haven't seen it in YEARS! And looking at the photo, I see my youngest daughter, Amelia in my face, my little beautiful twin. My momma is my one true friend and I love everything about her, even when she’s driving me nuts. She's beautiful, smart, inspiring, a survivor, my biggest cheerleader, and probably one of the funniest people in my life. And... I'm not sure who talks more stuff, her or I. My momma, my boo!

Last Day of Our Acquaintance

Author: Tafari, Monday, February 4th, 2013 at 8:54 PM Mindspill

The summer of 1990, I visited my father for the summer. It was nothing especially interesting about that visit but I enjoyed my time with him as always. During that visit, we listened to a lot of music. He was sort of an inspiration to explore different music. During the course of the summer, I played his Sinéad O’Connor “I Do Not Want What I Haven’t Got” album to death. I found it funny that my father 40 year old something enjoyed the music of some bald headed Irish chick. I loved many of the songs from the album, especially “You Cause as Much Sorrow.” Days after my father died, I played this album and reminisced. The other song that I love is “The Last Day of Our Acquaintance.” I never really understood the song but at the same time I did. It’s just so damn sad. Last week, I listened to the song after I left the last “supervised visit” that I had with my youngest daughter, Amelia. Parting was very sorrowful but necessary. I attended these visits for four months. The first one was great but the following meetings were the stuff of parental nightmares. Before walking away from the emotional torment, I told her that I loved her, will always love her and will be there when she is ready to talk and reconnect in a meaningful way. She told me that she never wanted to see me again. I told her that was impossible. Every time you look in the mirror, you will see me. My eyes, my nose, my lips, my ears and my skin. You are me… Unfortunately, I had the same conversation with her older sister Olivia months ago. A tough decision for sure and something I would not wish on anyone. Although the decision was a tough one, I’m OK. I experience so much hurt last year that I have none left to give. Bad and good. Experiencing the last day of seeing your child’s face is just. Now, I’m a single guy with 2 daughters out there floating around who get a child support check, no love, no connection. Blah… A nigga tried.

They’re Having a Baby

Author: Tafari, Sunday, December 2nd, 2012 at 1:01 PM Mindspill Mindspill

It wasn't all that long ago when I photographed my friends Reggie & Adrienne getting married.. Time is flying and babies are popping up. So excited about their next phase of life! Like the rest of our friends, I'm dying to know the measurements of Baby Boy Butler. His dad is super tall!!! I need to start a betting pool. Mindspill

See a few outtake photos here...