Movember: A Movement For Men's Health

Movember is a worldwide movement that aims to raise awareness for men’s health by investing in research projects and initiatives. One of the ways you can tell that a fellow friend or family member participates is by looking at his facial hair during November. If he doesn’t touch it or trims a lot less hair than he usually does, then he is more than likely to be a part of the movement… or he’s just lazy and using the month as an excuse to not shave.

This shoot was personal to me because I’ve known several great men who lost or took their own lives due to health or mental issues that went on for too long without being talked about or treated. This happens every day.

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It is a great cause for men worldwide, especially when it comes to simply talking about issues surrounding men’s health. We do not talk about or have a good idea of what affects us despite the fact that there are many young men dying every day from treatable and preventable diseases/disorders if they’re caught early.

With this photo shoot involving men from different and diverse backgrounds, I hope to instill the importance of talking about unusual changes you may have noticed in your body or mind but choose to ignore/push aside due to the obvious social stigmas of seeming weak/vulnerable or being told to, “get over it.” Diseases and mental health issues do not discriminate. We must learn how to approach and deal with these issues if they end up affecting you or a loved one.

Some of the leading causes for the deaths of men in the U.S. are the following:

- Prostate cancer
- Testicular cancer
- Mental health and suicide

Here are some quick facts and early symptoms you can keep an eye out for to get you and your fellow brothers talking.

  1. I strongly encourage you to do your own research into some of the medical history of men in your family so that you can be prepared to make informed decisions about your own health. Sources for further reading can be found below.

  2. I am not a trained medical professional and the following information has been derived from various websites strictly for the purpose of sharing. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor, go to the emergency department, or call 911 immediately.

PROSTATE CANCER FACTS:

  1. Cause/s of prostate cancer: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/prostate-cancer/causes-risks-prevention/what-causes.html

  2. 1 man in 9 will be diagnosed with prostate cancer in his lifetime.

  3. 1 man in 41 will die of prostate cancer.

  4. Prostate cancer typically develops in older men and African-Americans. 6 out of 10 cases are diagnosed in men aged 65 or older.

  5. Despite being a serious disease, more than 2.9 million men that have been diagnosed with prostate cancer are still alive today.

  6. It is recommended that men get themselves checked annually starting at age 50 by way of Digital Rectal Exams (DREs) or Prostate Specific Androgen (PSA) testing. If there’s history in the family relating to prostate cancer, it is a good idea to get routinely tested at earlier ages than recommended by the American Cancer Society (ACS).

EARLY SYMPTOMS:

  1. Burning or pain during urination.

  2. Difficulty urinating.

  3. Loss of bladder control.

  4. Blood in urine.

  5. Difficulty getting an erection.

  6. Swelling in legs or pelvic area.

  7. Bone pain that doesn’t go away, or leads to fractures.

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TESTICULAR CANCER FACTS:

  1. Cause/s of testicular cancer: https://www.cancer.org/cancer/testicular-cancer/about/what-is-testicular-cancer.html

  2. 1 out of every 250 men will develop testicular cancer.

  3. The average age for testicular cancer diagnosis is 33.

  4. This cancer appears more often in young and middle-aged men. 8% of diagnoses occur in men over 55 years old.

  5. It is recommended to perform monthly self-examinations to check for lumps in the testicles if you are between 15-55 years old.

EARLY SYMPTOMS

  1. Painless lump (can be the size of a pea or marble if found early) or swelling on either testicle.

  2. Pain, discomfort, or numbness in the testicle or the scrotum (with or without swelling).

  3. Sudden buildup of fluid in the scrotum.

  4. Lower back pain, shortness of breath, chest pain, and bloody sputum or phlegm can be symptoms of later-stage testicular cancer.

  5. An enlargement of the blood vessels from the testicle.

  6. A hernia.

  7. Twisting of the testicles.

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MENTAL HEALTH FACTS:

  1. Some of the common types of mental disorders affecting men today are: depression, body dysmorphic disorders, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

  2. More often than not, men would rather not seek professional help or talk about their mental health due to: social constructs, feeling vulnerable/weak, thinking the symptoms they have, aren’t something to worry about.

  3. Over 6 million men suffer from depression every year.

  4. Men make up for 40% of people diagnosed with binge-eating disorder.

  5. 4 out of 10 men will experience a traumatic event in their lifetime, with some experiences being so severe, it leads to PTSD.

  6. PTSD can stem from sexual, violent, and/or emotional traumas.

EARLY SYMPTOMS:

PTSD:

  1. Negative thoughts.

  2. Changes in mood.

  3. Self-neglecting behavior.

  4. Intrusive memories of a traumatic event.

  5. Extreme physical/emotional reactions to something that reminds a person of the traumatic event.

  6. Lack of interest in previously enjoyed hobbies/activities.

  7. Emotional numbness.

  8. Easily startled or frightened.

  9. Trouble sleeping.

  10. Overwhelming guilt or shame.

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DEPRESSION:

  1. Anger, irritability, aggressiveness.

  2. Feeling on the edge.

  3. Loss of interest in work or family.

  4. Not being able to concentrate.

  5. Overeating/not eating enough.

  6. A need for alcohol or drugs.

  7. Voluntary isolation.

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BODY IMAGE (BODY DYSMORPHIC DISORDER):

  1. Obsession with a perceived flaw in appearance that others can’t see or may seem minor.

  2. Engaging in behaviors that hide or fix the perceived flaw (constantly checking the mirror, grooming, or skin picking).

  3. Constant comparison of your appearance with others.

  4. Constant seeking of validation/reassurance from others regarding your appearance.

  5. Avoiding social situations.

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SUICIDE FACTS:

  1. Men die by suicide 3.53x more often than women.

  2. White males accounted for 7 of 10 suicides in 2016.

  3. Firearms are the most commonly used method of suicide among males.

  4. The highest increase in suicide is in males aged 50+ (30 per 100,000).

  5. There is 1 death by suicide every 25 attempts.

EARLY SYMPTOMS:

  1. Verbal suicide threats.

  2. Expressions of helplessness.

  3. Risk-taking behavior.

  4. Depression.

  5. Lack of interest in future plans.

  6. Increased use of drugs or alcohol.

  7. Sleeping too much or too little.

  8. Giving away prized possessions.

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This whole blog post might seem to be despondent in nature, but that is the reality for many men out there. Start that conversation with a friend, brother, or partner who might seem to be going through a rough patch in life. The sooner we talk about these issues and lay them out on the table, the sooner we can help each other lead better and higher quality lives. We’re all in this together. You are not alone.

If you see someone who has not been himself lately, ask:

“Hey bud, you good?”

If you’d like to donate: https://mobro.co/13888659

Follow me at:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ceasarjoneswawa/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ceasarjonesphoto/

Center for Disability Rights

The Center for Disability Rights (CDR) is a Non-Profit Organization (NPO) that advocates for the rights of people with disabilities. Recently, I was asked to volunteer at CDR’s annual Accessible Halloween Trick or Treat event. Over 300 children and their families came out to enjoy the festivities put together by the hard-working staff, mounted police officers, and volunteers!

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I have to say, shooting for this event brought me back to Earth and made me appreciate the wide range of humanity all over again. Thanks for having me, CDR!

Links to CDR:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/cdr_nys/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/rochestercdr/
Website: http://www.cdrnys.org/

Follow me at:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/ceasarjoneswawa/
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/ceasarjonesphoto/

RichiePan Forever

The late Richie Panarra is a legend in the biker/American art/tattooing community. I didn’t realize just how well-known he was until his second son and a good friend of mine, Dylan Panarra, invited me to attend the Indian Larry Grease Monkey block party in Brooklyn. It consisted of a bike show, a bike jump by Cole Freeman, and various vendor booths. A couple of us from Rochester went down there to support the release of www.richiepan.com, a website that sells prints of Richie’s old art and apparel to celebrate his life.

The PAN booth was adorned with Richie’s artwork, clothing, and his favorite panhead bike, Viola. Below is a photograph of Dylan explaining how it worked to his girlfriend.

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Just by looking at the bike, you could tell it had a lot of miles on it. It was full of home garage modifications, including a kick starter pedal with “PAN” cut through the pedal itself. I lost count of how many people came up to either Dylan or his mother, Cindy, to share stories of how they remembered Richie.

Through my camera, I was able to get a better understanding of how the Panarra family became a well-known, loved, and respected name in New Jersey. I’m fortunate to know his sons and to have the opportunity to observe them make their own marks with what little time that we all have.

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And with that mixture of tire smoke and burnt rubber, I’m out. Catch you next time!

https://www.richiepan.com/
https://www.facebook.com/richiepanmerch/
https://www.instagram.com/richiepan/
https://www.arradevelopment.com/

https://www.facebook.com/ceasarjonesphoto/
https://www.instagram.com/ceasarjoneswawa/

P.S. Just so you know, I saved a few more photos in my story highlights titled, “Richie Pan”. It can be found on my Instagram profile page. Go there and tell me which photo you liked the most!

It's A Bird... It's A Plane... It's A Drone!

Hello from Rochester, New York!

Photo credit: Ezra J. Moore,   @sidewalkandthesea

Photo credit: Ezra J. Moore, @sidewalkandthesea

Julian Moiwai, Chubbies model, FAA-certified drone pilot, and a good friend of mine, reached out to see if we could do a quick creative session while he was in town for business. Always being up for a chance to work with other creators, I wasn't going to say no!

It's difficult to find an adjective to describe how I felt when I first saw the video. I was impressed with the transitions, flight paths, and the simple, clean feeling of it all. He also captured me asking a guy if I could take pictures of him. This is what it is all about for me: connection. I enjoy meeting new people and photography is an excellent medium for doing just that, especially when it comes to creating content with like-minded folks.

The video below was made by the man himself, and the photos are mine from that same day!

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Check out Julian's social media accounts:
https://www.julianmoiwai.com/
https://www.instagram.com/whatjujusaid/
https://www.facebook.com/julianmoiwai/

We're all in this together, fam. Don't forget that.

Ceasar Jones

Man In A Suit

Whew, this weekend was a whirlwind! My Alma mater, the National Technical Institute for the Deaf (NTID), celebrated their 50th anniversary. This meant over 3,000 alumni flew or drove to Rochester to celebrate a big milestone for the institute. On top of having one of my photographs be a part of a silent auction, I took advantage of this opportunity to photograph one of my good friends, Nate when he was visiting from the Midwest!

Follow me on Instagram: @ceasarjoneswawa

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Happy 4th of July! Stay safe and have fun out there folks.

Iowa Baseball Camp for the Deaf

Good afternoon everybody! I spent all of last week in Des Moines, Iowa. I was there to volunteer my services as a photographer for the Iowa Baseball Camp for the Deaf (IBCD) for the second year in a row.

IBCD is a week-long, half-day baseball camp that provides a place for Deaf/Hard-of-Hearing children aged 7-14 years old to learn and play baseball. Due to the enormous effort put forth by Dylan Heuer and all of the staff, interpreters, volunteers, and sponsors involved, the camp has been successful for four years and running. I'm eternally grateful to be part of a wonderful community.

While I was there, I was reminded of why I enjoy being a photographer: unbridled emotion and moments. The campers are just there to do two things: learn and play their hearts out. It made my job easy because they weren't worried about much else.

Short story time: there was a girl named Lainey. She is a cochlear implant user with little knowledge of ASL. She came into the camp an absolute nervous wreck. I soon found out why: up until the first day of camp, she had little exposure to the Deaf world and so the sudden change was an overwhelming experience. However, the community welcomed her with open arms and animated hands. Sure enough, she transformed into another person entirely. From the second day and on, she was all smiles and now an active member of the Deaf and HoH community with a love for baseball.

Enough from me, here are the pictures from the week in Iowa where we played ball, rain or shine!

All editing done by Dylan Heuer.

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Summer Vibes

Hello everybody, and welcome to my first blog post on this website!

I wanted to share some pictures from a recent photo shoot with Erica Jae, a well-known photographer in the Rochester area. She is part of an art collective, UUU. The organization hopes to open a gallery this summer! Keep an eye out, I'll be there.

Needless to say, I was a bit intimidated because I don't often find myself shooting another photographer. But hey, who's got the time to hesitate? I dove straight in and got started as soon as we found each other on the Genesee River!

I set out to execute an idea in mind: a thrilled girl soaking in the sun rays that had been hidden during another long winter in Rochester. To help portray this, I decided to go to The Hamilton apartments based on a recommendation by a friend. The blue/yellow/pink walls acted as a cool backdrop against Erica's coral sundress. Here we go!

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It's unbelievable how the city just springs to life after the summer starts heating up. Go outside and get some vitamin D in yourself!

Check out Erica's work: 
https://www.instagram.com/ello_yellow/
https://www.uuuartcollective.com/erica-jae/