Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Showing Us Our Lives.

I am always amazed when I look back through my photo archives at how many beautiful people live on the Sunshine Coast, how many gorgeous places there are, and the incredible amazing array of events throughout the year. You can get a sense of the volunteer work I do to be on purpose and of service to the community by taking a peek at a small sampling of my flickr photo site which currently has over 40,000 photos! It often brings me to tears of pure joy and gratitude when I look back, as I attend so many events, and see so many people and process so many photos I am often off to the next event before getting a chance to enjoy where I was just at.

It is so great to know that these photos and the videos on my youtube channel bring joys and smiles, sometimes tears, and their moments in time are shared around the world, and bring visitors and tourist to our community. This helps everyone from Realtors to tourism operators to the single mom slinging hash browns and coffee trying to support her family on minimum wages.

One of our local arts and entertainment magazines did a story about what I do for the Sunshine Coast and I was super flattered at the headline they gave it... "Showing Us Our Lives" You can click the title to go read the article itself. I had never thought of what I did that way or saw how people see me. One thing that has stood out for me is the many faces of the Sunshine Coast I have had the deep privilege and honour of both meeting and capturing as a keepsake for future generations.

I remember the Sunshine Coast Museum telling me I am the modern day Helen McCall who's photographs documented the rural areas and left a social history of the Sunshine Coast during the 1920's, 30's, and 40's. I am extremely honoured by this and as my collection of photography is just too huge for our little local museum I have contacted the Royal BC Museum in Victoria, BC to see if they would take on the archive for future generations.

I have kinda unfortunately come to the conclusion that I have to stop doing all this specialty photography as I can't sustain it financially. Or I need to get help to find a way to make it pay the bills. A sad closing to something that gave me extreme joy as well as the community, but here I am at a standstill without a clue what to do next, unless I somehow magically get my own TV show or movie. I had hoped an inspirational book deal might have come along by now too but as I mentioned in an earlier blog, our local book publisher just didn't think it was a worthwhile venture for them economically. But we still have faces, thousand of faces and places!

Not too long ago, I was recognized as one of the Faces of Sechelt for a short story I wrote about what I loved about Sechelt, BC and what a great inclusive community it is. Its extremely impressive not only for its multi-culturalism but the incredible amount of Gay, Lesbian, Bi, & Transgendered leaders, in such a small rural area away from the city. This was a story I wanted to have written and published a year later but could not convince my editor or publisher to do. I guess as it turns out the timing was better this time around.

Faces of Sechelt PHOTOS

Duane Burnett receives award of recognition from District of Sechelt and Province of British Columbia at the Faces of Sechelt Community Dialogue workshop in Sechelt at the Seaside Centre on Saturday, February 6th, 2010.

Sechelt Mayor Darren Inkster presented Duane Burnett an award of recognition along with four other local residents including Xiang Li, Delmo Lebo, Shelley Jankola and Helga Kraus. Winners were selected from a story contest about good or bad experiences of inclusiveness in Sechelt.

The Faces of Sechelt task force aims to make the community a more welcoming and inclusive place to live. It was organized by the District of Sechelt, Alof!i Consultancy, and Dialogue Programs Continuing Studies at Simon Fraser Unversity. The event was sponsored by the Government of Canada, Welcome BC, Embrace BC, and the Province of British Columbia.


Faces of Sechelt
Community Dialogue
Task Force

Duane's Winning
Faces of Sechelt STORY

In many parts of the world gay, lesbian, bi and transgendered people are shunned, tortured, killed and used as scapegoats for political or religious gain.

On the Sunshine Coast, and in Sechelt, gay, lesbian, bi and transgendered residents are embraced as some of the communities most outstanding citizens spearheading a better community with their tireless efforts in arts, business, sports, culture, media, religion, community services, events, politics and more. The District of Sechelt even officially declared a weekend in honour and celebration of them each year on the second weekend of August. For me, this is by far, one of the number one examples of what makes Sechelt a welcoming and inclusive community, leading us towards a kind, loving, peaceful, and accepting third millennium where we embrace each other and work together for our beautiful gorgeous stunning Earth.

Hubbing & blogging the Sunshine Coast on Twitter, Facebook, YouTube, My Space and Flickr! http://www.twitter.com/duaneburnett

ALL PHOTOS (C) Duane Burnett.
All Rights Reserved.


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