Every 12 weeks at The Virginian-Pilot a staff photographer has the opportunity to choose his/her topic of choice and photograph it for three months. The image(s) run every Sunday in our Magazine section of the paper and it is also published online in a blog format.
Some fantastic work has come out of our column Common Ground. Off the top of my head, I can think of three, but there are certainly more, just have a look for yourself. Be sure to visit Preston Gannaway's "Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea," Amanda Lucier's "Behind these Walls" and Ross Taylor's "Prayer and Processions." All of these inspiring bodies of work were born from the weekly series.
My work-in-progress "Hoy, Pinoy" is a personal look and long-form narrative of the Filipino community in Hampton Roads, VA. Throughout the 60s, many first generation Filipino men made their way to the States by enlisting in the US Navy. This history combined with the dominate presence of the US Navy in our region has created one of the larger Filipino populations in the States. That said, I also hope to give some insight into the growth, assimilation and thriving socioeconomics of an immigrant community in the United States.
The images below are from the first half of the my tenure with the column. I only have six more installments to go and I feel like I'm just getting started. I have a feeling that like Gannaway's and Taylor's series, this project might not end with the column, the possibilities are infinite.
*Click on any image to view larger or begin slideshow.