Fan conventions have changed dramatically; evolving from what to outsiders looked like the solitary realm of Trekkies and geeks to a broad smorgasbord of pop culture gatherings. Events where fans of nearly anything with a common interest, whether anime, furry outfits, the Dude or what-have you, can gather as one to celebrate, reveling in their passion and knowledge for a pop culture phenomena of some matter of form.
With thousands of “My Little Pony: Friendship Is Magic” fans flocking to Baltimore for the annual BronyCon convention, Baltimore Sun photographer and videographer Christopher T. Assaf wanted to look at the individual convention-goers.
To capture the true “brony” spirit, Assaf set up a black backdrop and took portraits of costumed “My Little Pony” fans using the Hipstamatic app on his iPhone. He also asked the subjects of these photos why they came to BronyCon and why they chose their various costumes.
Baltimore United Viewfinders is a youth leadership initiative where participants use multimedia arts to explore their definition of self and place, encourage community action and exchange visual and verbal dialogue.
What they don’t say on their website is that they’re a group of teenagers that use art and photography to document their lives in East Baltimore.
In recent years, the area known as Middle East in Baltimore – just east of Johns Hopkins Medical Center – has been in conversations of urban decay, housing abandonment and conflicts between residents and Hopkins.
But if you look at the groups’ published photo book, ‘Eastside Stories,’ you see a different Middle East. [Read more below]