*****The following is a first draft of a speech for a video that I will finish up (probably tomorrow) as part of my application for funding. Assuming that the video is acceptable this part of the application will be submitted tomorrow.
Hello! My name is Keith Birmingham, and I am seeking funding for an extended trip to Las Vegas, Nevada to produce, “Buskers of Las Vegas”, an e-book and calendar project about the buskers of, and the business of, busking in Las Vegas. I am an aspiring photographer/journalist/musician/songwriter, and what you see around me is most of my equipment. As you will soon see, I work very hard with both my photography and music. And, my future working life depends on the fact that I am willing, and do, work long hours. I am constantly striving to become better with what I do as a photographer/journalist/ musician/songwriter.
I am 63 years old, and retired for medical reasons from the trucking industry. Over the past 2.5 years of my retirement I have come a long way in regaining my health, but have no current desire to rejoin the trucking industry. In my teen years I wanted to be a musician. I went to Vietnam instead. After that I started college with the intention of becoming a photojournalist. Marriage, kids and life changed that. I had a long, hard, and interesting 35 year career as an over-the-road trucker, with just a little bit of experience in photography along the way. Now, I am chasing lifelong dreams again.
At several times in life I have had the pleasure of seeing my photos published, or sold to private parties. For the past several years I have posted my photos all over the web. For the past two years I have had an on-line studio at HKB PhotoStudio.com. However, as you might imagine, a Social Security Disability pension does not allow me the luxury of financing a business startup. So, I have continued with my photography, and made a few sales. But, have not been able to advertise my services. However, I am not seeking funding for an advertising campaign. I am seeking funding for a project that, if successful, will enable me to fund similar projects while raising capital to invest in my photography business. And, along with this will allow me to travel for projects in both photography and music.
Please bare in mind that my major concern is my photography project. And, what I have most definitely learned in the past 2 years is that I need to specialize in a field of photography if I am going to succeed. Therefore I have only a few choices that are limited by my physical location and the kind of photographic work I desire to do. I prefer to do documentary style “event and travel photography and journalism”. Which brings me to my project. My project is Buskers. Buskers is street slang for street entertainers. My initial project is to photograph the Buskers of Las Vegas, Nevada. And, after succeeding with this project I hope to earn money for identical projects in other cities. I believe that my music will help me do a better job with the photography project. Along the way I hope to find the courage to step on stage (so to speak) as a performer.
Why Las Vegas? I am not a gambler, but I love the desert. And, I love the energy of Las Vegas. I visited Las Vegas at the beginning of my trucking career in 1974. I have returned as often as possible, and stayed as long as possible. I was there for 6 months in 2010, and tentatively plan to establish a residence there shortly. However, for this project I have made temporary arrangements to stay at a friends house (I should expect to pitch in some rent money) to complete this project. Therefore my funding needs will be limited to the expense of getting out there, travel expenses around the city, food and (in case previous arrangements fall through) lodging. Plus, I am researching the time and cost involved in photographing for, and producing a book, calendar, and an e-book, from the project. I would like to find and fund professional help in the final stages of this project in order to produce the best product available.
(To Be Continued)