I was inspired by Joseph Rodriguez before I realized I was looking at a Joseph Rodriguez photograph. Several years ago I picked up a copy of The Beat Within, Illustrations from the Inside, which along with artwork included a few photographs from Joseph Rodriguez. It would be a few years as my interest for photography grew before I started to connect the photographs I'd stumble across on the net to the name, Joseph Rodriguez. This text Juvenile is a work of art... an incredible collection that tells a powerful story of the lives represented through Rodriguez's lens along with Rodriguez's own life as well. Below is a link to the Amazon location for purchase and the quote included at the beginning of the book by James Baldwin, source "Autobiographical Notes".
"One writes out of one thing only - one's own experience. Everything depends on how relentlessly one forces from this experience the last drop, sweet or bitter, it can possibly give. This is the only real concern of the artist, to recreate out of the disorder of life that order which is art. The difficulty, for me, of being a Negro writer was the fact that I was, in effect, prohibited from examining my own experience too closely by the tremendous demands and the very real dangers of my social situation." - James Baldwin
Recently caught an episode of the ESPN 30 for 30 documentary on Fernando Valenzuela, titled Fernando Nation by filmmaker Cruz Angeles. In the 80s I collected sports cards for basketball, football, and baseball. I got rid of most of my card collection hanging on to some of my favorite cards of the time. These two are my only Fernando Valenzuela cards. Quite a story. The first card covers statistics between the years of 1980-85' and the second Upper Deck card covers years 1986-90'. 1990 was his last year as a Los Angeles Dodger. The entire Fernando Nation documentary can be viewed on YouTube: click here.