I am also indebted to and will always remember the people of Overtown, who opened up their hearts and lives to me and who accepted me as a temporary member of their community. I have been especially blessed to have met my friend and fellow photographer Jovan “Bonna” Lamb on my first visit to Overtown. BonBon introduced Overtown to me, and me to Overtown.
Overtown: Inside/Out is not only the capstone project for my Master’s of Multimedia Journalism degree. It is in many ways the capstone of my forty-eight years of life thus far. If not for the following individuals, that life would have been less rich, I would not be the photographer or person I am today, and this project would not have been possible:
- My father, Charles Edward Ledford, who along with my mom gave me my first camera
- Eileen McCabe, who gave me my first photo assignment
- Rich Beckman, my first photography teacher
- Allen Dean Steele and Scott Sharpe, my first photo editors
- Tom Priddy, Ken Cooke and Jack Belich, who hired me as a summer intern for their newspapers’ photo departments
- David Alan Harvey, who inspired me to pursue my first long term, immersive photography project
- William Pachner, Nick Wynne and Eugene Richards
- Bobby Box and Dan Beatty, who sent me around the world. Several times.
- Thomas Russell Kennedy and Sam Abell, each of whom, through their work, affirmation, and friendship challenge me to photograph deeply, and to think deeply about photography
- And finally, Noni Hartanto Ledford, who has given me an unspeakably wonderful gift: her life to share
All video, photographs and text © Charles “Stretch” Ledford.
For more information about Stretch please follow the links at the bottom of this page.