It is not common for photographers to capture the images of Black Women skillfully for print media, or the fashion industry to respect the deep beauty of Black women who are studied, and imitated. Rare is the portrayal of Black masculinity in a pure form not surrounded by pretense, or the repulsive tendency to feminize men for public consumption, or the nasty impulse to denigrate the spiritual powers of the African soul of Manhood.
This study of a man, a Black man in a pure form of intensity as a beautiful form who is strong within himself is an honoring of a heritage, a legacy of strength that pulled the best out of a people besieged by a society that feared, and distressed him historically, socially, and in his face over time. An intelligent face allows me to look and see a mother's touch, and a father's introspective insight into his son. A face shows the story of a people, and you respect that in this capture of a soul, a man's soul.
All sons are sent into the world as gifts or parasites. But every son sent into the world knows a period of time of being cherished, and here in this portrait of a Man is the reflection of not only a pensive beauty within, and of a man, but the reflection of being cared for into his adulthood as a gift you, the photographer captured thoughtfully, Peter Salama. For that I honor you, and your respect for the subject: the dignity of a Black Man.
~ Gregory E. Woods, Keeper of Stories 5.31.13