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I Met Captain Adama (Edward James Olmos) And I'm A Little Starstruck

Mad Mike

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A little quick background... I'm up working late, waiting for one photo upload to end so I can start the final batch because I was the official photographer for the Daytona Beach CVB at the Rejuvenate Marketplace conference for faith based meeting planers this week. When I first got the gig, not being a particularly religious man, I didn't know what to expect, but I was encouraged by the speakers including Mr Olmos. The event turned out to be a pleasant glimpse back into the wold of faith for me and more. The people were all pleasant, the faith based speakers were more focused on inspiring good will and deeds, and Michael W Smith was a wonderful pianist and singer with some inspiring stories of his own. Soledad O'Brien talked a little bit about diversity with personal stories about her family and the her desire to tell stories that no one else tells, her message being that every individual has a story to tell and we should all listen. Erik Wahl created amazing works of art before our eyes while delivering an inspiring speech about creativity and confidence to take risks. But Olmos...


Where to begin? First of all he was a presence. As an actor he is larger than life on stage, telling stories with the whole of his being. More than that he is an amazing communicator, "listening" to his audience as well as talking. He said from the start that he asked for the audience lights to be left up enough to be able to see us and he want kidding. You see, his message of diversity included some topics that were I'm sure were more than a little rough some of the attendees.


He started by introducing himself as being mexican... and asian... and hungarian jewish... and tracing his lineage as well as the lineage of the entire human race back to Africa in order to make his point that there is only one race - the *human* race. Even going so far as to remind the audience that their caucasian image of Jesus was almost certainly incorrect. 


Here's where it got interesting, because here was a guest speaker at a faith based conference and he made a point of challenging them by talking about the scientific history of the human race. He even suggested that God must surely have spoken to mankind through all religions (a strong belief of mine... if there is a god... but that's another topic) Remember how he said he wanted to see the audience? Well he talked a bit about his expertise in reading people by their body language and proceeded to point people out who he thought were not taking his message particularly well. Not in any mean way but still... that took balls. 


Now here's where it gets personal because he proved to me he was listening. At one point I had lowered the camera and was just listening when he asked if we had seen his speech to the UN (I hadn't) and suggested we google it. Not really thinking, I said to myself (out loud) "I will"... At which  he pointed to me and said "I know *you* will". And I knew at that moment that he had been reading my reactions as well. (I was after all, in front of the front row;). I was totally in tune with what he was saying and it must have shown. He even went so far as to point at me and nod before he walked off stage. I was the only one he did that to. It may sound silly but I was completely blown away.


Then as I think this couldn't be any cooler, I spotted one of the other photographers heading back stage with him so I grabbed "my sack" and asked if I could tag along. He said yes and the next thing I know I'm in the elevator with them heading up to a private photo op and having my pic taken with him. He was gracious and warm with everyone but I couldn't bring myself to say anything more than what a fan I am for fear of making a fool of myself and not wanting to take too much time and too much advantage of the gift the real pro photographer gave me.


I think I was so excited I made a typo when I entered my email into the system that was supposed to auto email me but I got to spend more time with the pro later and along with some valuable advice and inspiration, he has promised to send me a copy. I'll post when I get it.


In the mean time, I give you *my* photo of Edward James Olmos as will I remember him. Looking me dead in the eye.   :)


Many more of him and the event here...



Oh and PS... A special thank you to Chris Savas the pro who was kind enough to share some knowledge and let this nube backstage.  If you like good photography, check out his site



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Cool story and so excited for to read about how your photo journey is taking off. I remember when you were first starting out.


Thanks man. I really appreciate it. I only hope I can keep it up. Even as I'm getting better at the craft and one referral leads to another, I'm wondering how much longer I can keep it up. These events can be extremely taxing and by body is breaking down. Bad back. Bad hips. Bum leg... heart condition. There are nights I'm in so much pain I want to cry myself to sleep. But then there are moments like these that make it all worth while.

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I posted this in the photography thread but I'm re-posting here for maximum coverage without starting a new thread...



FYI - if you are a photographer and on a Mac, there is what looks to be a neat perspective tool available free till Nov. 3rdon the Mac app store. 


I found out about it here:

Download DxO Perspective for Mac OS X For Free (Reg. Price $19.99) – Through November 3, 2013 | Digital Photography live


And the apple link is here:


Mac App Store - DxO Perspective


Free is good. Go get it!

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Cool story!  Part of you wanted to say "You got rid of all the technology?!  CAPTAIN, WHAT WERE YOU THINKING?!"  Admit it?   :lol: Ok, maybe that's just me.  


Then again he will always be Jaime Escalante (Stand and Deliver) in my eyes.  I don't know how many times they made us watch that movie in school but it was at least a dozen.    

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