My photo book, A CLAW to Remember is for sale. It features portraits and event shots of the Charlottesville Lady Arm Wrestlers (CLAW). For those not in the know, CLAW is an organization of women dedicated to helping our community through physical combat.
You can order a book online.
All book proceeds go to The Voice Project at Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women: an educational theater and writing program designed to help Virginia’s inmates develop stronger social skills; a fuller sense of creative expression; greater self and community awareness; tolerance of differences; ability to resolve conflicts; and higher self-esteem.
Here is a slideshow of the book. The CLAW Themesong featured here is by my band, Straight Punch to the Crotch.
Buy the Book:
I want to offer a huge thanks to Harvest Moon Catering, Abrakadabra, Monkeyclaus, The Blue Moon Diner, and of course, the women of CLAW. Also, thanks to Wistar Murray for writing and editing. Alloy Workshop for design, Will May for conceptual vision, Jennifer Tidwell for being amazing, and my wife Jocelyn and son William for everything else. You all are wonderful.
We are in the midst of a entertainment revolution. Radio, television, and newspapers have all seen sigificant declines in both revenues and consumers. All across the nation, traditional consumers of media have decided, “We want more interesting content, and maybe we should make it ourselves.”
The spectacle that is the Charlottesville Lady Arm Wrestlers (CLAW) fits into this new paradigm. It is not a sports event, not community theater, and not a fundraiser. It is a sort of “wiki-theater” in which every amateur is also an author and every decision is made from the bottom up. CLAW is a spontaneously generated, self organized circus, made by amateurs for the benefit of our community.
The experience of CLAW is live, loud, and intoxicating. Billy’s images show that yes, CLAW is comprised of an eager band of weirdos; yes, CLAW is a freak show of the highest order; yes, CLAW is a Halloween cage match that goes all year long. But, in addition to these major selling points, CLAW is also something deeper: a fight song for a community of women with creative muscle to burn.
As the big entertainment companies continue to hole up in their bunkers of overpaid celebs, CGI, and stale, regurgitated content, women and men in Charlottesville have decided that we want a little more. If Big Media does not want to enrich our lives, we can do it ourselves. We make art by the people and for the people. Sony, NewsCorp, Viacom: you can stick with your reruns and reality shows. We don’t need you. Maybe we never did.