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In today’s presumably more accepting world, people with complex cultural and racial origins become more fluid and playful with what they call themselves. Tracey Williams Bautista says her seven-year-old son, Yoel Chac Bautista, identifies himself as black when he’s with her, his African-American parent. Certainly, race still matters in this country, despite claims that the election of Barack Obama heralded a post-racial world. When people ask Celeste Seda, 26, what she is, she likes to let them guess before she explains her Dominican-Korean background. The country is living up to its melting pot reputation as American faces become less homogenous and more diverse, a phenomenon that renowned photographer and portrait artist Martin Schoeller captured for the October 125th anniversary issue of National Geographic magazine.
The images, which are coupled with the individual's "self ID" and the box he or she checked to indicate race as specified on the 2000 and 2010 census, are a striking reminder of Americans' complex cultural and racial origins. Schoeller's photographs capture "the changing face of America," a trend that is no doubt picking up speed with the increase of both interracial marriages and the births of biracial babies.
On playgrounds and college campuses, you’ll find such homespun terms as Blackanese, Filatino, Chicanese, and Korgentinian. Tracey Williams Bautista says her seven-year-old son, Yoel Chac Bautista, identifies himself as black when he’s with her, his African-American parent.
Adventure and outdoor photographer Tim Kemple often photographs in extreme conditions, whether he’s rappelling down a sheer rock face or capturing kayakers heading straight down waterfalls.
Like it or not, weather is probably the most inconsistent constant we face in our everyday lives. Traveling is the way that I’ve built a career in photography, capturing the world’s best outdoor and action sport athletes in the planet’s most extreme landscapes.
Never was this more apparent than on an assignment I took to capture images along Iceland’s famous Ring Road using a new point-and-shoot camera.
Snow is only one of the many weather elements photographer Tim Kemple encountered in his travels. As the week wore on I realized an unexpected and bigger benefit: I was interacting with my travel companions more and tinkering with my cameras less. A woman runs against billowing winds and into waves along Vik Beach, making for an unusual scene along the chilly Icelandic coast. In a fortuitous moment, photographer Catherine Karnow came upon Roland and his dog, Twinkle, traveling on the GoldenPass train. Photographer Catherine Karnow carefully composed her view and worked with her subjects to capture the essence of the Lavaux region in Switzerland. Originally, photographer Catherine Karnow wanted to use mountains as a background for her picture, but by adjusting for the light, she discovered an even better composition and a picturesque Swiss scene. In order to give a sense of speed, the photographer purposely used a panning technique to photograph this red lechwe. With large ears and an elegant spotted fur coat, African wild dogs are a special and rare sight in Botswana.


About On AssignmentFollow our National Geographic Travel photographers as they capture images on assignment. Is it simply that their features disrupt our expectations, that we’re not used to seeing those eyes with that hair, that nose above those lips? Census Bureau has collected detailed data on multiracial people only since 2000, when it first allowed respondents to check off more than one race, and 6.8 million people chose to do so. The 1960 census depicted a country that was still 99 percent black or white, and when Williams was born six years later to parents of mixed black and white ancestry, 17 states still had laws against interracial marriage. On playgrounds and college campuses, you’ll find such homespun terms as Blackanese, Filatino, Chicanese, and Korgentinian. We may be a pluralist nation by 2060, when the Census Bureau predicts that non-Hispanic whites will no longer be the majority. In May researchers reported that political conservatives are more likely than liberals to categorize ambiguous black-white faces as black. She points out that even then she has revealed only a fraction of her identity, which includes a Long Island childhood, a Puerto Rican adoptive family, an African-American sister, and a nascent acting career.
Census presented the question of race differently, allowing respondents the option of selecting more than one racial category, with nearly 7 million Americans identifying as members of two or more races. When Joshua Ahsoak, 34, attended college, his heritage of Inupiat (Eskimo) and midwestern Jewish earned him the moniker Juskimo, a term he still uses to describe himself (a practicing Jew who breaks kosher dietary laws not for bacon but for walrus and seal meat).
Ashley and Tony are happily married, however, when they first met and fell in love, Ashley was a man'and Tony was a woman. While on assignment for National Geographic Adventure Kemple also faced a challenge all travelers face—constantly changing weather. That is, after all, why it’s one of the first things mentioned in family catch-ups or business calls and one of the most popular categories of mobile apps. While photographing everything from spiky rock summits in Pakistan to elite runners in the sweaty, wet jungles of Brazil, I’ve seen a lot of wacky weather. The goal was simple on paper: Spend a week driving the 800-mile loop around the island, and document anything and everything that happened with my point-and-shoot.
By day two, I realized that having your camera in your pocket has other distinct advantages.
In our week traveling the Ring Road, I think we saw every type of weather imaginable: rain, snow, wind, sun, rainbows—usually all in the same day. While on assignment, Catherine Karnow was tasked with capturing the charm and aura of this magical lake and its surrounding area. See their photos before anyone else as they share breathtaking shots from the world's most beautiful destinations. Ten years later that number jumped by 32 percent, making it one of the fastest growing categories.
In Williams’s western Virginia hometown, there was only one Asian child in her school.


But head counts don’t guarantee opportunity or wipe out the legacy of Japanese-American internment camps or Jim Crow laws. The 2010 census included changes to more clearly distinguish Hispanic ethnicity as not being a race, with data revealing that whites would no longer be the majority in the country by 2043. Chris Tina Bruce calls herself a hybrid - neither male nor female as part of a gender revolution known as 'Gender Queer' or 'Gender Fuzzy'.
Here, he shares his experience traveling and photographing Iceland’s ever changing climate. We even have television stations dedicated to telling us how dry (or wet) our weekends are going to be. But nowhere else in my travels have I seen the weather change so quickly and dramatically than as in Iceland. Namely, if you find yourself needing to jump over a river to get the perfect shot of a passing rainbow, you’re much quicker and nimbler. But with my trusty point-and-shoot in my pocket, I think I had the perfect tool for the job, always within reach and ready to capture those fleeting moments of light and weather across the epic Icelandic landscapes. To link her own fair skin and hair to her white ancestry, Williams says, would have been seen by blacks as a rejection. Whites, on average, have twice the income and six times the wealth of blacks and Hispanics, and young black men are twice as likely as whites to be unemployed. Balian is athletic, masculine and would give most male models a run for their money except for one thing - he used to be a woman.
For a photographer, weather becomes a separate obsessive art in and of itself—so much so that expeditions are often planned to far-off lands simply because the weather, or light, is particularly agreeable for the mood we’re trying to capture. Now, we could go on for hours about the geography, the waterfalls, and the otherworldly color palette that make Iceland stunningly beautiful, but to me it’s the ever changing weather that makes Iceland a photographer’s dream. Or if you come around the corner on one of Iceland’s infamous F roads and there happens to be a field of Icelandic horses in a freak blizzard before you, capturing the fleeting moment is only a five-second process. Or accept the challenge to fly a kite as the wind gusted to hurricane levels on the beaches in Vik. Although the multiple-race option is still rooted in that taxonomy, it introduces the factor of self-determination. The visual feeling of a photograph is almost always directly related to the weather, so travelers we photographers often become.
It’s a step toward fixing a categorization system that, paradoxically, is both erroneous (since geneticists have demonstrated that race is biologically not a reality) and essential (since living with race and racism is). The tracking of race is used both to enforce antidiscrimination laws and to identify health issues specific to certain populations.



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