Sept 18. 2015 from Jason
Here is a picture for your project. Hopefully you don't want just individual photos. [The initial portrait included all four family members.]
I feel that Galesburg is an undervalued treasure, locally and nationally. I fear I'd need an essay to convey my feelings, but let me try to put it like this:
Many of our town's residents do nothing but complain about being here. I was the same way growing up. Then I joined the Navy, got out and did a little more traveling. I've seen many places and people, everywhere and every one of them had "problems" that were, somehow, relatable to life in the 'burg. Recently, as I was doing a show for Caged Aggression MMA at the 75th Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, I was approached by a gentlemen because he heard where I was from. He told me how much he loves Galesburg and stays here 3-5 times a year. This man is a multi-millionaire that LOVES Galesburg, but so many people that live here take it for granted. A man that's seen and experienced the "finer things" in life and he LOVES Galesburg‼
My point is that I love Galesburg too. It's small enough to offer that "hometown" feeling, big enough to keep life comfortable and centrally located between Peoria, the QCA, Chicago and St. Louis. So much beauty and wonder right in front of us, taken for granted and much more that's hidden.
I feel that a project like yours would help to uncover some of what's hidden but also make some open their eyes to what's in front of them.
Plus my family is a treasure to be shared!
Thanks for allowing me to share.
John Bakker (artist): Jason, Your observations on Galesburg (a flatlander in the Navy??) were terrific. You caught the spirit of this project exactly. Can I quote you in my blog?
Second. I'll split the picture into two pieces, time doesn't permit me to put three people on a panel. Individual shots are even better if you'd prefer to resubmit. It's up to you.
John: Gmail cut of the little guy at the bottom. Send me a few more shots, larger images framed on faces are best are best but I can work with what you send me.
Sept 21. 2015
Jason: How's this: I'll go home tonight, take an individual photo of everyone, hopefully without them knowing and send them to you tomorrow. Does that work? Ironically, I was a photography for the Navy! Of course you can quote me. I won't say or write anything I don't want to be held responsible for.
Jason: Uh-oh. Nothing was attached. I made my original choice because it was my daughter's baptism.
John: Thanks, Jason, that's great. I've attached a couple of examples so you know the way I typically crop images.
The project is really a collaboration between me and the people of Galesburg. Your images and reflections on life here are a significant part of the project.
Sept 24. 2015
John: Jason, Don't forget to send me a couple of pictures.
Jason: I won't. My son's had a fever. Believe me, I won't forget. I've committed!
John: Sorry. Hope he feels better soon.
Jason: Would this one of the kids work alright?
John: That's great. Send me a picture of you and your wife, too.
October 5. 2015
John: Jason, I hope your son is feeling better. I'm still waiting for that picture.
Jason: Just went back to school today. I'm sorry for the delay. I will pin my wife down tonight and we'll get it and send it off tomorrow. Cheers and thanks for the patience! Do you have many subjects yet?
John: Oh my. He was sick! That strains everyone's routine. Glad you are back to normal. No worries about the delay.
Jason: Yes. They ended up putting him on an expectorant, antibiotic and breathing treatments every 4 hours. To make matters worse, he vomited after his first dose of antibiotic. This made it next to impossible for future doses! Then we had to make sure to keep our youngest away from him.
John: Yikes. Makes for really tired parents.
Jason: Hey John. We got some pictures last night but I forgot the camera. I'll run home at lunch, grab it and get that taken care of.
October 9. 2015
John: Thanks Jason, Love your persistence.
October 12. 2015
Jason: Well here it is. After spending my entire anniversary weekend with a fever, I've got it for you. I picked this one because, chip off the block, my son bombed us in the background and it was perfectly placed.