Las Vegas is the city of events - weddings, conventions, award banquets, board meetings, sporting contests, beauty contests, galas, reunions, hearings and debates.
In my first six months as a photojournalist at the Las Vegas Sun, it seems I covered every imaginable event - and many I never imagined. There were conventions for belly dancers, roller derby and washing machines; a beauty pageant for married women; entire sporting events for checkers, poker and rodeo; and too many condo groundbreaking ceremonies, condo topping-off parties, and condo opening events to even begin counting.
What struck me about many of these scenes is how, within the context of a structured event, there are so many more little moments going on. Beyond the planned veneer, real moments flow in and out - moments that I hope to capture as a photojournalist.
The awkward pose of Mrs. Hawaii, who was so put together on stage, during an off moment at the Mrs. United States Pageant photo shoot makes her seem lost and unsure. The somber-looking man stares up a pole dancer inside Jet nightclub during a contest where the top prize was money for breast implants. A collective look of anticipation in what seems like an elaborately staged tableau at the Latin Chamber of Commerce Awards contrasts with a simple grin and a bowtie at the Contact Center World Awards.
All these moments I hope might resonate in some way as a cultural marker of our time and place in the world - beyond the event, but still all about Las Vegas.