Pop culture, entertainment & all things Fresno

Throwback Thursday: Minnesota Fats schooled by a Fresnan?

Sports Miln - MiqFound this Fresno Bee file photo of legendary pool shark Rudolf Wanderone, also known as Minnesota Fats, watching as a 14-year old Fresno kid named David McCray plays 8-ball against him at a Fresno department store in 1966. Minnesota Fats is a fictional name for a pool shark in Walter Tevis’s novel “The Hustler” but Wanderone apparently took the nickname as well. The caption of the photo says “The incessantly talking Fats quieted down for a second as David broke, then whipped him handily as about 300 watched…”

Photo a day: The Big Fresno Fair (Day 1, rides)

The Big Fresno Fair opened this morning, and as of this afternoon the rides started to whirl. So if you’re heading out to the fair after work, have some fun with our photo a day challenge. Just snap a photo of today’s “rides” theme and share the photo with the #beebigfairfresno hashtag. Here’s one shot by Bee photographer Craig Kohlrus shared today:


Find daily themes and instructions on the jump:

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The Beehive Interview: Terry Hayden


For ArtHop tonight, Terry Hayden wants you to come into the Spectrum Art Gallery and rest a while.

In a new show titled “Come Ye Yourself Apart and Rest a While,” Hayden presents four decades of photos. Long mesmerized by landscapes, the photographer has been dabbling recently with the human form. But whatever the subject, he always shoots in black and white. Texture and form are the key ingredients for him.

I interviewed Hayden for today’s Life section in The Bee. Here’s the extended version of that interview.

Question: Tell us about the title of the show.

Answer: In the early and mid 1970s I lived in the Catskill Mountains of upstate New York. I had moved to the town of Woodstock to immerse myself in its fabled artistic atmosphere. I spent a lot of time wandering the back roads and trails looking for scenes that caught my eye. These could be traditional landscapes, old buildings, or combinations thereof. On one of these trips I came across an old stone church. It was attractive in general, but what cinched it for me was the small hand carved sign on the door: “Come ye yourself apart and rest awhile.” It suggested a marvelous paradigm for what I felt the the tumultuous times needed.
That phrase, in its syntax and meaning, underlines what I would like my art to offer viewers — a time to “come apart” from day to day life and rest their spirits by sharing my work.

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Should restaurants ban foodie photographers?

The New York Times had an interesting story this week about Manhattan restaurants getting fed up with the “food porn” trend of people taking photos of their food and posting them on Facebook.

Some restaurants are outright banning picture taking, while others have policies against flash photography. It “disrupts the ambience” and can be a distraction for diners, they say. The story highlights some of the more zealous picture takers:

“There are those who use a flash and annoy everyone around them. There are those who come equipped with gorillapods — those small, flexible tripods to use on their tables.
There are even those who stand on their chairs to shoot their plates from above.
“We get on top of those folks right away or else it’s like a circus,” Mr. Bouley said.”

I don’t think we have any such photo bans at Fresno restaurants (let me know if we do). But what do you think of this trend? Chefs and restaurateurs, feel free to weigh in with your perspective too.

Personally, I’m all for quickly taking a discreet photo — no flash. We have some pretty amazing chefs in this town and I’ve been served some dishes that look like works of art. And those photos work as marketing too. That yummy photo might just be the push customers need to check out someplace new they’ve been considering.

‘Soul Calling’: Joel Pickford’s Hmong photo exhibit is immersive, impressive

Every once in a while I get a chance to really relish a story topic by spending a significant amount of time reporting and researching it. That was the case with photographer Joel Pickford’s impressive exhibit “Soul Calling: A Photographic Journey Through the Hmong Diaspora.” I was able in my Sunday Spotlight centerpiece column to devote a big chunk of text to this important show at the Fresno Art Museum, which took eight years (and more than 50,000 images) for Pickford to put together. In my column I write:

In Pickford’s remarkable project, which started as an in-depth ethnographic look at recent Hmong arrivals to the Central Valley and later expanded into repeated trips to Laos itself, you get a glimpse of profound generational changes as members of the Hmong Diaspora have settled into their adopted culture. And you get a feel for the fascinating and stalwart country they left behind …

For a year, he focused exclusively on these recent arrivals, who were basically arriving unprepared for a new country years after earlier refugees had already made lives for themselves. He made memorable images: A young boy with no toys scrapes in the dirt in front of a tired, unlandscaped apartment complex. A man sits with his two wives on a couch as a relative watches TV in the background. A young pregnant woman stands in front of a mirror as she struggles into her too-tight Hmong New Year dress.

We were able to use three of Pickford’s photos in the print edition, which I’ve included on the jump. For more, check out this online photo gallery from the project. And make plans to visit the Fresno Art Museum to view the exhibition, along with “Threads of Life: The Art of Houa Vang,” an exhibition of story cloths and decorative clothing from a prominent local Hmong-American artist. The shows run through Jan. 6.

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The Mike Oz meme challenge – updated

UPDATE 2: More memes arrived over the weekend. I’ve added them to the end of this post.

UPDATE 1, Friday afternoon: Wow. The response has been great. I’ve added several submissions from Beehive readers at the end of this post.

ORIGINAL POST at 12:13 p.m.:
It’s been a humorous week on the meme front, from the McKayla Maroney “not impressed” images to the Mars landing extravaganza. So photographer Craig Kohlruss and I couldn’t resist having a little fun and turning Mike Oz’s birthday crown photo (a gag inspired by Blimprov’s performance at his birthday party) into a meme. You can join the fun. Just download the file, create your meme and email me the photo for the Beehive.

mike oz FRESNO SIGN.jpg

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Fresno turns out for NOH8 photo shoot

UPDATE, 4 p.m.: Here’s a link to more photos from the shoot.

ORIGINAL POST: In case you missed Friday’s NOH8 photo shoot at the Big Red Church in Fresno, I thought I would share a couple photos from a gallery created by Bee photographer Mark Crosse.

Event organizers worked on getting the campaign to Fresno for about a year, and they weren’t disappointed with the turn out, reporting that about 500 people took photos.

Some of the Fresno participants showed a lot of creativity. I love this photo from Mark.


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