NORWAC – Saturday AND Sunday!

12th house

I’m not even sure where to start now that I’m finally at the end of editing all the photographs I got at NORWAC a couple weeks ago. I first started this project at the ISAR conference in the fall of 2014 as a way of documenting my beloved astrological community and I swear I’m more in love with it now than when I started. This time it took much longer to edit the pictures than I expected, there were just so many. I’m grateful to be at the close of another wonderful round, and I’m humbled by this community and the generous way people shared themselves with me, played with me, and made this project their own.

I’m going to highlight some of the pictures and the people that made them with me, and made this weekend possible, striking, and full of possibility. There are links to the rest of the shots at the end of the post.

The shot above features Corina Dross, Mubeenah Mughal, and Rhea Wolf embodying the nature of the 12th house – the last of the twelve houses to rise because it has just risen! Think about the golden hour when the Sun has just crossed the horizon at dawn, things are suddenly visible but most of us are still asleep and unable to appreciate it, hence the 12th house is all about hiding in plain sight.

Daizy October Latifah

And hiding in plain sight has pretty much been the fate of astrologers of color and queer astrologers for a very long time, but this NORWAC marked a change in that. I saw more astrologers of color and queer astrologers then any astrology conference I’ve ever been to as well as just a whole crew of younger astrologers, in large thanks to the diversity program started by Laura Nalbandian, who organizes NORWAC every year. Sam Reynolds wrote about the program last year on his site, UnlockAstrology.com, making the case for its necessity. NORWAC has always been known for it’s family-round-the-table feeling and to see that table expand and grow to include a new and upcoming crew was a really welcome experience. For those of us who’ve been waiting and longing for more diversity in the astrological community it was deeply moving to see the dream beginning to be realized. I won’t lie, tears were shed.

But not in the Synastic Snaps photobooth! I’m choosing Daizy October Latifah as my poster girl for this outreach program because the way she holds that Libra glyph stick so proud and righteous and PRESENT delights me all the way down to my toes. Libra is usually known for reflecting others, so it’s especially meaningful to see Daizy here reflecting herself with such love. Daizy is one part of Wild Seed Astro, formed at NORWAC by several of the attendees as “a transformative collective of melanated magic” to keep the spirit and momentum of the spark they lit there going. Follow them on their youtube channel to catch what they’re throwing down. They’re just getting started.

Chartreuse Tembo Barriere

What am I gonna say about Chartreuse Tembo Barriere that this picture doesn’t say so much better? Another member of Wild Seed Astro, Chartreuse won my heart with her Leo rising and Capricorn Moon combo. She’s not holding the glyph stick for Leo because it’s SELF EVIDENT, duh. Also, please take a look at the book she’s holding, because this woman is radiating self-healing realness and she’s written a book to help all women do the same by creating a blueprint by which we can own all our parts, especially the dis-owned ones. Only a Capricorn Moon could break that subject down in a way that makes the integration possible, get your copy here.

Jessica Painter and Anders M Renee

OH. MY. GOD, you guys. THESE TWO. I knew when we were creating these images that they would be some of my favorites, and they did not disappoint. There’s a slew of them, each better than the last and I may have lost my heart to them a little. Jessica Painter and Anders Renee, you two made my day! Part of the tribe at Portland School of Astrology, these two could be the poster children for it, the joy and fun they’re emitting is exactly the vibe that school is becoming known for, under the expansive vision and guidance of founder Jayson Paulson.

Tracy Quinlan

I’m going to close out the images from NORWAC with this shot of Tracy Quinlan, who wins the prize for best tee shirts that weekend, and who never took a picture with me without making me split my gut laughing. Her playfulness and camaraderie represent my experience with my astro tribe in the best way. Also, this shot was one of the last ones I took that weekend and damn if it wasn’t exactly the encouragement I most needed to block off all other distractions to finish these images and bring them to you all.

Below you will find links to the images from each of the three days. There is an option to buy images off the site I use to host them, but you can also just drag and drop them to your computer for freeeee! I’ve set the price point for buying them at the lowest setting so I don’t benefit from the cost of the images if you do buy them off the site. However, I happily accept donations, so if you want to contribute to the cost of renting the equipment and the time it takes for me to edit the images feel free to use the donate button at the top right of this page (or scroll to the bottom if you’re on your mobile).

Thanks again to everyone who helped make Synastic Snaps what it is, a direct reflection of this ever expanding community we all love, and the tribe we are creating in every shot. Feel free to share, and please tag #synasticsnaps as you go!

Synastic Snaps Friday

Synastic Snaps Saturday / part one

Synastic Snaps Saturday / part two

Synastic Snaps Sunday

Synastic Snaps at NORWAC – update!

You guys, I’ve bitten off more than I can chew and Saturn is mad at me!!! Here’s Kent acting it out for me in our synastry so I don’t get bogged down thinking it’s, you know, reality. I know I said I would have the pictures up by mid last week, but the truth is there are so many of them! Which is AMAZING AND AWESOME, by the way, I just didn’t anticipate the demand, it’s much bigger than the last time I did it. So between that and having other life commitments, I’ve only been able to get through Friday’s images thus far.

However, if you participated in Synastic Snaps on Friday, I’m happy to report they’re up and you can find the images following the link below. I’ve made them web friendly, but if you want a better resolution, just contact me here and I’ll be happy to send you a higher rez image. Just drag and drop or use the download button next to the picture.

http://www.wonderbrightphotography.com/NORWAC-2016/Friday/

NORWAC not a test!-1283

I figure I’ve got about 30 hours of editing left, but I’m feeling wildly optimistic, so I’m going to say I’ll have Saturday’s up by Friday and Sunday’s by the end of the weekend. Wish me luck, and if you see Saturn will you tell him for me I think he’s mad sexy and I’m grateful for all his nagging.

I’ll see you on the other side!

 

The Secret Lives of Astrologers

Jingling I love my astro tribe. I feel more at home in a group of astrologers than any other group I’ve ever been a part of. There are a lot of reasons for that, but at the core it’s because astrologers as a group are deeply invested in questions about what it means to be human, and those are my favorite kinds of questions.

We don’t always get the answers right, or even the questions, but as a group, on the whole, we are engaged. It’s the only non-secular community I’ve ever been involved with that concerns itself with these matters, and we come from a particular angle that is so mind-bendingly strange that it excites all my witchy senses and reassures me about all of the all of everything.

Nicola SmutsThat angle, of course, is the connection between the planets in our solar system and life here on earth. And once you start making connections that grand the connections between those of us here on the ground and our connection to all life is just a foregone conclusion. I certainly don’t claim that every astrologer is making that connection or even that I make it all the time myself. We’re as human and diverse as anyone else, and astrologers may be even more prone than most to mistaking our beloved craft for the end result rather than the beginning of the journey.

There is something so beguiling about being able to see the connection between time and events, between otherwise apparently random circumstances that it’s easy to become more attached to the method by which we found that connection than the connection itself. It’s like arriving at a great big shiny portal and being so fascinated and awestruck by the portal that you don’t actually pass through it.

Nick Dagan Best & Dr Jenn ZahrtRob Hand calls this “the reality game,” whereby we get stuck in the circumstances of our lives and rather than learning from history or our charts we take it as a sort of proof that this is the way it’s supposed to be, as if we were doomed to repeat over and over the circumstances of our lives rather than liberate ourselves from them.

But it really is a marvelous portal, this astrology door thingee. And the people I’ve met at the crossroads here in the heart of it are some of my favorite people on the planet and some of my best friends, too. I’m so deeply grateful for all the laughter, the play, and the delicious, constant chatter about life and living and being a human bean.

I created this photobooth project to collect pictures of my people and to share my joy and my passion for this tribe, which calls on ancestors going back for millenia, and which is in the middle of a massive fantastic renaissance. I’m so grateful to be here, at ISAR’s 2014 Conference, sharing our lives and connecting as we hurtle through the universe spinning about on this beautiful blue marble we call home.

Thanks to everyone who participated yesterday! The link to the shots I took then is here, and I will update this post tonight with the pictures I take today. I will be at the tradeshow from ten am until I can’t do it anymore (probably a little after the lunch break).

Shine ON, bright stars!

 

UPDATE: The pix from today are up! You can find them here and download the ones you want at www.synasticsnaps.com

Synastic Snaps! Crackle! & POP!

Jenn Zahrt and Wonder Bright

I’m so excited, you guys, I barely slept a WINK last night. Which is no good, because today is a big day, today is the day that my bestie, Dr. Jenn Zarht and I launch our pop-up photobooth project, Synastic Snaps, in which we encourage people to have fun and play together in front of the camera with their friends to celebrate a special occasion.

And we couldn’t pick a better more special occasion for our inaugural launch, because we’re here in Arizona at the fabulous Wild Horse Pass Resort for ISAR’s 2014 astrology conference, “Stepping Into the Circle.” So we’re here with our tribe, a pack of astrologers running wild together under one roof and we feel right at home. There are open arms everywhere. It’s like a Hogwart’s reunion.

Jenn holds all the glyphs

We’ve got glyph sticks galore and more fun than you could shake any of those sticks at, and we are excited to share our project with everyone.

So I can’t really care that my website isn’t quite ready for its relaunch, or that there are broken links in it like stairs leading to nowhere or that I’ve never used strobes with my camera before or that I haven’t promoted this properly. If there’s anything writing on my blog every day (my remedial measure for my Mars) taught me this year it’s this: you are never ready, and that’s not the point.

The joy lies in the action, in the experience of becoming.

So come along with me and Dr Z, my little sweet potatoes! We’ll be putting out pix as we go on our Twitter feeds, (Jenn’s at @zahrtillery and you can find me at @starsofwonder) or you can follow along using the hashtag #synsnaps.

I’ll see you on the other side!

UPDATE: if you were one of the people I took a photograph of today and you took my card, but couldn’t remember the site to get the photo’s from, here’s the link again: www.wonderbrightphotography.com & thanks so much for all the fun and for sharing yourselves so generously with me today! If you post to FB or Twitter, please consider giving me some link love and linking back to this post or to the Synastic Snaps page. Bless!