a blog about poetic creativity*******************ALL IMAGES © Stephanie Reid for HaikuFlash

Posts tagged “HaikuFlash

A Labyrinth of Light

For about one week, The Architects of Air – Luminaria, a traveling chapel of sorts touched ground in Austin, Texas. On the outside it looks like a futuristic fun house. On the inside, another world where tunnels of color bathe the senses in a variety of vibrations. Upon entering, visitors waited under a dome primarily of red. Pulse rates increased, faces softened, eyes darkened. We began to feel the heat of the sunlight trapped inside the PVC structure. The excitement was beginning. After a brief orientation, we entered a room filled with green. The transition took us aback. We all stumbled a bit and felt like we were suddenly underwater. A boy whispered in awe, “I feel like I’m dreaming.” Indeed, from that point on, we felt like we were transported into a fantasy. Visitors lay inside of it’s sloping walls meditating on the striped ceilings and hues blending as they draped the corridors. We all swayed as the wind outside and walkers within rocked the walls to and fro. As a photographer, I felt that the straightforward images were amazing documentation of this genius work of art, but didn’t quite capture the disorienting feeling of being there. Spinning, twisting, and panning finally told the story I was experiencing – being inside the heart of a flower.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Grackle vs. Parrot and other fun…

…at Butler Park and the Dougherty Art School.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

To see the student’s shadow puppet shows, visit:




Disaster Benefit Books by HaikuFlash


 If you haven’t donated to the Bastrop State Park fund yet and are still interested in doing so,

I have just finished a photo book of images taken this spring and summer. 50% of the profits will go to benefit the park.

There are two sizes – 10×8 and 13×11. The prices range from about $55-$110

  In addition, I have completed a book to benefit the flood victims in Thailand.

       To preview all of my books, visit: http://www.blurb.com/search/site_search?search=Stephanie+Reid

         2012 Calendars can be viewed at: http://haikuflash.photoshelter.com/gallery/Calendars/G0000F7ElBrHzGdY/

          To purchase a calendar, click on its cover image (the one with a spiral binding in the photo).

Thank you for your interest.

Gloria’s Nightlife

Gloria’s Salvadorian restaurant in the Domain hosts a salsa night every Saturday with a fantastic band (La Mona Loca Orquestra) and DJ C. Devast8. For Halloween weekend, they held a costume contest with $1000 prize for a male and female winner. The costumes were as great as the prize. If you’re interested in trying it out, but don’t know how to salsa yet, there’s a dance instructor at 10:30.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Austin Powwow 2011

While standing at a food shack waiting for breakfast, I watched airplanes make vapor trails in the sky. Suddenly, a peace pipe formed. It was a sky sign for the 20th Austin Powwow! If you have never been, it is every first Saturday of November. There are storytellers, dancers in full garb, frybread and buffalo chili, corn, and many vendors with books, beads, and art work created by various Native Americans. It’s free and takes place at the Tony Berger Center from morning til night.

This year’s powwow was blessed by gorgeous weather, although a bit windy at times. I couldn’t stay as long as I normally do, so I barely saw any dancing. Instead, I spent most of my time in the storytelling tent.

The first storyteller was Sequoia, a patrilinear descendent of the famous Cherokee, Sequoia, who invented the Cherokee alphabet in 1821 and started the Cherokee / English newspaper, Cherokee Phoenix. He sang and told the story of ‘One Drop of Blood’. Next he revisited a funny story his grandmother told him that starts, “In the great forever that was, the forest dwellers all spoke Cherokee…” To hear these tales, visit http://youtu.be/zffxj-gEQ8oy and http://youtu.be/kgdVpAI-IG0

Last, told a scary story about going his friend daring him to go into a house they were sure was haunted. Slowly, they approached the spooky house and walked up the creaky steps. They opened the unlocked door and peeked in, using a lighter to reveal a casket leaning against the wall! After being goaded, Sequoia followed his friend into the pitch dark house, only using his small flame to lead the way. As it got hot in his hand, he had to continue on in the dark. Still, their curiosity got the best of them and they crept towards the casket, determined to discover what was stashed inside. Sequoia, being the braver (or more gullible) of the two, reached his hand out and recoiled as he touched a piece of fabric. His friend urged him to use the lighter again, so that they could see what it was. They took a deep breath as he flicked the flame up. Their eyes got big and the started laughing wildly at the pool table illuminated before them!


Following the entertaining Sequoia, was another Cherokee, Choogie Kingfisher, of the Ketoowah Band. He also made us laugh with his rendition of ‘The Rabbit Goes to Church’. Rabbit decides to go to church one day and try it out. As he pushes open the door, it squeaks, so that when he gets inside, everyone is turned around staring at him – a whole congregation of big, unwelcoming dog eyes. He looks to the back to see if there is a spot he can just sit in there, but it’s filled with dog tails hanging up so that they can sit more comfortably. Nervously, he tries to find a spot to sit down. Every time he squeezes into the end of a pew, the dogs squeeze him out into the aisle. Indignant, he storms out determined to get the dogs back.

Now rabbits are good at pulling pranks, so it didn’t take him long to plot his revenge. He rolled up a giant cigar, took it over to the church, lit it up, and blew the smoke in huge plumes through the door, yelling, “Fire! Fire!” All the dogs panicked and jumped up out of their seats grabbing any random tail as they raced outside. That’s why to this day dogs chase their tails to see if they’ve got their own and sniff each others’ to see if someone else has theirs!


One of the most fascinating First People dances is the hoop dance. It takes great coordination to pull off a performance. Ryan Harjo of the Creek Nation demonstrated and described several common configurations created with the hoops. He also played a courtship song on a mellow sounding cedar flute. The video can be seen here: http://youtu.be/1FrjIaFYOis

Ryan Harjo Demonstrates 'The World' Configuration of Hoop Dance

Ryan Harjo Demonstrates 'Flower' Configuration of Hoop Dance

Ryan Harjo Demonstrates 'Tornado' Configuration of Hoop Dance

Ryan Harjo Demonstrates 'Eagle' Configuration of Hoop Dance


Finally, a Cherokee family, in traditional garb sang and described their clothing. The women were wearing “tear (pronounced tare) dresses”. They are worn for working in and were named such because they didn’t have scissors at the time they were first made. The fabric had to be torn instead. They are usually adorned with seven triangles symbolizing the the seven original clans of the Cherokee people, wolf, wild potato, paint, blue, long hair, bird, and deer. Sometimes there are 14 triangles to represent the Cherokee clans before they split apart and became the Iroquoian tribes.

Oliver Rajamani and Friends Grace the Whip In Stage

While driving home from a party on Saturday evening, I glanced the Whip In marquee. Lo and behold, Oliver Rajamani’s name was like a beacon there. “We have to turn around! It’s our lucky day!” I exclaimed. The last time I saw him was at the First Night Austin festival in 2006. I was moved to tears. He has been playing music since childhood and so has mastered many instruments. They had just started when we walked in, so we got to see a wide array of styles, such as gypsy, flamenco, and even the blues, which I had never heard him play before that night. Not only is he a great strings and percussion player, but he is an enchanting singer. His warm up song,  a cover of “The Tennessee Waltz” , revealed that Oliver’s country western voice could pass for our local hero’s, Willie Nelson.

His drummer had a fun disposition and was also well versed in a variety of styles. At the end of the night, a lovely female joined them on stage to belt out classical Indian melodies.

What a great night! The Whip In has transformed itself into a hip little hang out with a great selection of beer to accompany a delicious and inexpensive menu. This was the icing on the cake. Rajamani doesn’t play their weekly, but he has played there a few times this year, so check the Whip In calendar or, if you’re the passenger, keep your eyes on their marquee! http://www.whipin.com/news.html

For more information about Rajamani and to hear samples, please visit http://www.oliverrajamani.com/index.html

Their next show is scheduled for September 10th at the Carver Cultural Center. This event not only features Oliver, but also, Rosetta Strings, a group of musicians and dancers. $10 + a 20% discount at Papa Tino’s. http://www.ticketriver.com/event/1895-oliver-rajamani-concert/

Sadly, I didn’t have my pro camera with me for the intimate Whip In show, but these iPhone images are better than nothing.

Oliver Rajamani On Sitar

Oliver Rajamani On Sehtar

Oliver Rajamani On Doumbek

Oliver Rajamani Playing an Oud

Oud and Skins

Rajamani plays flamenco.

The Band