Portland Squared Rides Again!
Last year, the Association of American Media Photographers (ASMP) launched the first Portland Squared project. Like the name suggests, downtown Portland was carved up into fifty squares, each one assigned to a photographer whose job- if they chose to accept it- was to document the square in a day-long shoot. The take-away was a book and a gallery exhibit. But the collateral result was a huge bazooka of photographic talent aimed squarely at Portland’s soul.
We had a blast. Challenges abounded: for example for the photographer who got his square completely filled with water (the Willamette River), or for the photographer who rented an airplane (the same guy who got the square in the river) and for the photographer who insisted on doing portraits only if her subjects- men, women, children- sported mustaches. And then there was me, who went looking for the common man (and woman) and found the uncommon, the brilliant, and the unbearably funny. It was Portland’s version of the “day in a life” genre of photo documentary projects, and it opened eyes- mine included.
And this year, it happens all over again, this time bigger (75 squares) and better (instead of one day, the event will include a day and a night). This year, on May 17, 18, Portland Squared returns, and I almost forgot to mention the best part… everybody… professional and amateur photographers, are welcome to enter. Check out the web site: