Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Fighting Spirit

When Ms. Nina Parks got "The One," she was sooooo excited that she wanted to go out right away and embark on the new path she chose in her life. She decided to start where she left off. "Sometimes it's difficult to find your subject, so I decided to look back to what has always inspired me in the first place, Martial Arts. I trained for a long time, and when ever I go to my studio I always feel like I'm home. So, I figured what better place to start then where my heart is. Lucky for me, my karate studio (Oakland Karate and Kickboxing) was holding a smoker that very weekend. So I brought "The One" out there with me so I could snap flicks while keeping time. I mean I lucked out, since I trained there for so long I was able to have all access to anywhere around the ring which allowed me to get up to close enough. I was still getting use to working my camera; adjusting my settings, focusing and of course timing. But, if training in Martial Arts taught me anything at all, it's to never give up and that you have to put in a lot of time and hard work if you want to be the best at what you do. You can't give up. Of course you're not going to be perfect at it the first few times around, but you gotta follow the levels one step at a time and then move up the ranks. Just like everything in life step 1 is get up and be there. So what if you make mistakes. Sometimes it's the only way to learn what to do and what not to do. Just don't get discouraged when it seems to be getting too hard. Nothing that you want to be great at is easy, all you need is a fighting spirit to push you past the "trying" times. "

Monday, February 26, 2007

Excelsior Flower

Armed with her 35mm Nikon (The One), Ms.Nina Parks finds inspiration and beauty in her district, The Excelsior. In Latin (the language that we derive many of our words from) the word excelsior means "higher."

"You can take it how you want to. If I didn't live in the Excelsior I would have been a different person. I was blessed when my family moved in to my aunts house here in the Excelsior, 'cause I wake up everyday, rain or shine to a breath taking view of the most beautiful city in the world. But on a whole other level being boardered by Alemany, Bruno, and Sunnydale, as well as the activities with in the district, you have an unfortunate oppurunity to see, hear and experience many things, that make it difficult to be positive and optomistic about life. But you have to elevate above it all and find ways to stay modivated and become a stronger person.

I mean look the streets are crazy and everyone is hungry and I wanna live I don't wanna just survive. So I always look for the beauty in it all. I mean damn if you think about it we could be a lot worse off.

Half of my family is from Conception Tarlac a provence in the the Philipines. They worked very hard so we wouldn't grow up with the same struggles they faced, such as not having enough to eat or not having the basic amenities to live. So I know I'm blessed to be living here, but we as a people should always strive for more. You know, something better so that the next generation has a rich history to be proud of and learn from. "

The Excelsior is also characterized by it's unique street signs, named after countries and other major metropolitain cities in other counties. It's the only place in the world that Brazil will intersect Madrid.

"Ha! I love this intersection, I've had some of the best memories of my life out here. Dang it Kae! If we can't make it out to Brazil yet, I suppose the next best thing is living on it."

The Excelsior has birthed other well known artists and local celeberties, such as, Greatful Dead's Jerry Garcia , surrealist poet Philip Lamantia, the man the Twinkies defense was created after: mayoral assassin Dan White, we can't forget about world renoun turntabelist DJ Qbert ,and savy/diva like Hip Hop journalist Ms. Krishtine de Leon. And now added to the eclectic ranking of the Excelsior disrict is one Ms.Nina Parks.

" I love poetry. I love to read it, I love to analyze it, I love to write it, as well as capture it in my images. Maybe, one of these days I'll drop a few lines on all ya'll," she laughs. " Seriously though, art and music and martial arts are the things that keep my sanity. (They are all intertwined... really.) Have you ever read the poem 'The Rose that Grew from the Concrete," written by my favorite lyrists/rapper of all time Tu Pac Shakur. It goes:

Did you hear about the rose that grew from a crack in the concrete?

Proving nature's law is wrong it learned to walk with out having feet.

Funny it seems, but by keeping it's dreams, it learned to breathe fresh air.

Long live the rose that grew from concrete when no one else ever cared.

I love that poem and I relate to it. No matter what life throws at you go gotta keep pushen and you always gotta find, as well as be the beauty that rises "Higher" above the adversities and above all the haten ass people that don't believe in you." ----Nina Parks

The Birth of Nina Parks

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It took Nina Parks (also known as Ldubbs you Beezie) 22 years in this crazy beautiful world before she realized her dreams and pursued her life's passion (of the wide world of photography). Born and raised in the Bay Area with her older brother (who has instilled in her the importance of "Killing them with Class"), two years her senior. Ms.Nina Parks walked many different roads and detoured (many times over) off the beaten path, creating new avenues for herself to push towards success; forever a trail-blazer.

"Everything I know in life I've learned through experience, I've never been good at sitting in a class room telling me what life is like. I'm a Taures/Aries, it's only customary that my stubborn ass has to learn the hard way. I was always told to, look and see what I see and not what other people tell me to see. And I try to protray that concept in my photography."

No matter how many change-ups the world throughs at her she's always learned to re-adapt and find ways for her to come out on top. After years and years of just getting by and surviving mentally and emotionally, Ms. Nina Parks has finally found the music and inspiration in her life again.

"Every experience in life, good or bad, has something to offer you as a person. You can either grow and learn from each experience or you can let apathy consume you. At that point you might as well be dead. Me? I choose life. I honestly never thought that I would ever find something that I felt this passionate about. I believe you have to live before you can truely be born."

This Blog "The Birth of Nina Parks," is a window into her world as an artist, as well as a journey of growth.