Love for the Great Texas Photography (Rain) Festival

Love made me do it neon sign from Georgetown square photographed as part of the Texas Photography Festival.
“Love Made Me Do It” bathroom sign, Georgetown, Texas by Carol Schiraldi, 2024, iPhone 15 ProMax

This weekend, I had opportunity to attend the great Texas Photography Festival. This is an annual event held up in Georgetown, organized by the Williamson Museum and former White House photographer David Valdez. Now in it’s 5th year, the event includes photo walks, workshops, talks, and social gatherings. It really is a lot of fun and always very informative.

This year, the weatherman predicted a sunny day. Hooray! Actually, HA! There was little to no sun and we had some storms afoot but managed to make the most of it. Luckily, most of the events I wanted to attend were lecture type of events held inside the Georgetown library. It was nice and dry in there, let me tell you. Phew! Some of the events were packed too, probably on account of the rain.

One of the first speakers was a photographer I remembered from my days on a book project. After I returned from a trip to Japan our host organized a bunch of his fellow photographers into something called the book project. The idea was simple, we were supposed to join and create a book in a manner of weeks. I joined and eventually made my book on China. One of the other photographers in the project recognized my location and told me he was from Austin too. We chatted a bit over the course of the project. As it turned out, he did not make his book in the few weeks allocated for the project, but he eventually did finish it. In fact, it was the book he was presenting at the festival so I was excited to see his big reveal. I wasn’t sure if he would remember me but he did in fact remember me and he even gave a nod to our book project. Good times and a great project that it was.

After that session, I ran into some friends and we went off for a nice little lunch. Georgetown is such a quaint and charming town with such a nice town square. We found a place that was open and had some interesting food. It was mostly pizza but I didn’t feel like pizza so I think I had some tacos. Tasty food and good time catching up. As it turns out, the Georgetown library now also has a little coffee spot attached to it and it’s really very good. Note to self: get coffee every time you are near there. Good stuff that is.

After lunch, we decided to walk around and photograph some. As luck would have it, the skies parted and we had a dry spell, well just dry enough for us to walk around a little bit and get a few shots here and there. Nothing fancy, but I did manage to check out the Palace theater some. That place is always a favorite of mine and it makes for some great shots, even with my iPhone in the rain.

“Palace Theater Facade” Carol Schiraldi, Georgetown, Texas, 2024, iPhone 15 Pro Max

The afternoon found us in the company of an architectural photographer who was a kindred spirit of sorts. He did what I would call “architecture done differently.” It was great listening to him and seeing his work. As we were in the session, the skies opened up and it really started to storm outside. Phew! We had gotten our little photo walk in just in time and managed to stay out of the raindrops.

A portrait photographer rounded out the lecture series for me, and I really enjoyed her presentation as well. Got a lot of tips and ideas from that one.

Afterwards, we went to what I would call “the after party” which was a real treat. I got to meet a lot of folks and ran into some I knew. We went to this cheese bar type of place a few blocks away from the Georgetown square and I had what could only be described as a “deconstructed s’more.” It was like cookies with berries and marshmallow on it. Very tasty that was.

The bathroom in the place was a bit, shall we say, odd. It looked really small from the outside, but was actually rather large once you got inside. It was one of those bathrooms where you walk in and they had a shared gender trough style sink and then there were gender specific rooms off of this. It was in a cool old building and they had neon signs up in a few places. The big “Love Made Me Do It” sign that you see here was in-between the men’s and ladies rooms inside this place.

It was a great day despite the rain and I really enjoyed meeting lots of new folks. I’m surprised how much Georgetown has changed, now turning into a bustling vibrant town square yet again. I’m so happy I got to go and enjoy my time, even if I only managed to stay out of the rain long enough to get a few shots here and there. It was a great festival and I can’t wait for next year.

Until next time…

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