Adrienne

"...I remember me and my daughter were discussing sadness one day and she told me, 'Well, when you're sad, God can make your heart happy'.

Like, we weren't even on the subject of God, she just said it. So I told her she was right, God does Love us enough to make our hearts feel better. And then she was like, 'Well, I Love God'.

So I asked her how do you show God that you Love Him? She said, 'I give Him hugs, I bake Him a cake and put it in a box and send it to Heaven'.

So at that moment I realized that, at her age, she's actually relating to God being a part of her life and being able to express her appreciation for Him. But what really got me after we had that conversation was that as a mother I was doing something right. And as a single mother, that's probably the number one thing we worry about the most. It's like, I have to make sure I'm doing everything right because according to society, since her dad is no longer involved, she's going to be lacking something. So I'm trying to make up for what she's lacking and I'm very critical about that. So the conversation we had is a moment I have to revisit from time to time to remind myself that, 'Hey... we're on the right track here...'"

Turkey Mascots

(Left)  "What am I thankful for? Hmmm that's a good question because I've started this list all month. Immediately the things that come to mind are (you know) family, my job, good friends, etc. But it's sometimes the little things that really resonate once you take a moment to really think about it. And sometimes it's just the opportunity to be the one crawling around the floor with my nieces and having them say 'you're a horsey Auntie Mae!'. It's little moments like that. Like those are the things I'm truly thankful for! Everybody says, family, health, prosperity, blah blah blah; but to me it's all about the those really small itty bitty things that matter most...

OH... and I'm thankful for this costume..."

(Right)

I play roller derby... so I'm thankful for roller derby!! (laughs)

Candace

"Most of the time when people look at me, they think I'm evil, rude and bitchy and I don't really know why. But I'm honestly not as hard as (I guess) I give off to other people. I think that I do kind of hide that little part inside of me because I don't like being vulnerable."

"I have zero positive relationships to look at and I think that's why I'm single. My dad had been married for 25 years and now they're getting a divorce. Like I haven't witness lasting Love before. My grandmother and grandfather, as far as I can remember, stayed in two different rooms in the house. My mom and dad broke up when I was 2 years old. They both remarried somebody. She (mom) got divorced during my sophomore  year in college. "

Antoine

"I got a lot on my plate man. I go to school, I'm an entrepreneur, I work a 9 to 5, and I'm a father. I'm always moving man. You never know who you're going to run into so I try to stay as busy as possible.  Right now it's hard for me to focus on one thing, so I try to do A, B and C at one time to figure out which one works best for me..."

Brandie

"I fear not realizing all my potential. Like that's seriously my biggest fear. Like the one thing that wakes me up and gets me off of my butt when I'm being lazy and not trying is me imagining laying on my deathbed asking myself, 'what if I would've have done this?'. That scares the heck out of me. It's definitely a fear of regret from not trying. Like right now at this very moment I don't have a fear because I'm actually living life. But years down the line, oh my God, I feel like I wouldn't be ready to die. So while I have this life and this ability to try, I have to get on it!"

Alton

"Right now, I'm just networking with people and getting a better feel of Houston. As far as work, I'm doing designing such as logos, clothes, stuff like that. I've also done some modeling as well. 

I'm originally from Pine Bluff, Arkansas. I left and moved to Houston to pursue my dreams as a music artist. The idea of pursuing music came from people like my mother, Michael Jackson and Beyonce. 

About two years ago, I had a friend that was telling me about the city and I'd been wanting to move out of Arkansas for a while now.  So one day I just made up my mind, got up and moved. Now I'm ready to take care of business.

The most valuable lesson I've learned from all of this is to not be scared..."

Ce'Mone

"It's crazy because I recently lost a baby but my mom just found out she's expecting again. I feel like that's God's way of saying I'm about to be a mother because my mom was never really a mother. 

 Me and my mother are finally getting real close but It wasn't always like that though. I use to despise my mother with a passion. My mother was physically there but was never really emotionally there. Like she didn't really raise me, you know? Like, how can you be there but let me get "assaulted". And my dad stays like 30-45 mins away calling and checking on me because he's getting bad feelings about my well-being. But she couldn't even tell when I was going through something when I was living with her. 

But regardless of all the sh** I went through and going through right now, I'm still planning for a brighter future."

Willie

Willie Green.jpg

"I'm just a homeless who just got off them drugs. Back in the day, I did it all. Cocaine, crack.. you name it.

I'm originally from Louisiana. My family was going to a family reunion. I had to work that day so I wasn't able to go with them. Anyway, it was 13 of them riding in a van. They ended up driving towards a bridge that I told them not to ride on because it was a very old bridge and I didn't trust it. They took the bridge anyway and it collapsed. Just like that, I lost my family. I can't tell you what happened years after that but I do know I ended up homeless eventually.

When you're homeless, you do what other homeless people do because the people who aren't homeless can't relate to you. So they don't want to have nothing to do with you. And all the homeless people did was drugs, so that's what I ended up doing."

Eulas James (EastsideFlii)

"I just did my time and I'm fresh out. Allah changed my life for the better. I have a 3 year old who's changed my outlook on the way I live.

Now Life is my riches, Hollygrove forever, EASTSIDEFLII is who I am. Freedom is my mission through music."

Earlie Hudnall Jr.

Earlie Hudnall Jr..jpg

"I don't think money is the motive. We do things to survive. I've never had the intent of going into business or more less taking pictures for money to make it. I've been very fortunate to have had a job at TSU. My first job here was cleaning the paint room in the art department. Dr. John Biggers  gave me that job. Dr. Biggers and  Dr. Thomas F. Freeman are the reasons why I pursued photography. They allowed me the space, freedom and inspiration to do so. But money was never the motive for me. Documenting one's community was the motive and has become a great passion of mine from the beginning. 

You have to set your goals, you have to pursue them, then you have to put everything else secondary to that. But when you pursue them, you have to pursue them with a passion. And if you don't pursue it with a passion and if you don't Love what you do, well then again, you need to find something else to do. See when I get up and I come to TSU, whether I'm doing a picture for a student, or if I'm doing a picture for someone in the administration department, or whatever; I Love what I'm doing."

Charlie

"Sometimes I like to take this rail to the highest point just to see how much my city (Houston) has grown.

As for you, focus on getting that one shot and I'll see you in Time Magazine young blood.."

T.C.

"I'm actually on my way to work now. I work at Frank's pizza. You have to check it out. Some of the best pizza in Houston man.

I had a divorce 3 years ago. Me and her were together since high school. So it was definitely a turning point for me. It's all good though. It's a big world, ya know? I gotta stay busy man. I'm a 4.0 student working towards my masters degree and I'm going to do whatever it takes to provide for my son. It's like chess man. I'm not going to be too occupied in the moment and at the same time, I'm not going to look too far ahead of the future either. I just take things day by day as they come and I keep a long term plan. As long as keeping hitting the next plateau, that's all that matters. And that's the same thing with Love, you know? She's my ex wife, but I still Love her. If it's not meant to be then it's not meant to be, that's just how it is...

When it all comes down to it, the rent is still due on the first..."