Lenzy Ruffin Photography Blog

Lenzy Ruffin is a family portrait photographer in Washington, DC. 

Banneker-Douglass Museum Kwanzaa Celebration

A few images from the Kwanzaa celebration at the Banneker-Douglass Museum in Annapolis, MD led by Cheryl McLeod of the Maryland Commission on African American History and Culture. 

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The images above were in the former Mt. Moriah AME Church building, which is part of the Banneker-Douglass museum. The images that follow are just a small sample of the exhibits in the exhibit space part of the museum. The museum is basically two adjoining buildings...one is the exhibit space, the other is the former church.

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The Banneker-Douglass Museum really is a must-see. It's right around the corner from Main Street in Annapolis, so there are lots of dining, shopping, and guided tour options just steps away from the museum. There's tons of culture in Annapolis to explore and the Bannker-Douglass Museum is a huge part of it.


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Meet Chanel Compton. Chanel is the Executive Director for the museum. I know Chanel from her tenure as the Executive Director of the Prince George's African American Museum & Cultural Center. The last time we saw our heroine, she was barreling out of control in a golf cart. Today, she's a bit more subdued in her efforts to change the world.

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The problem here is she's trying to change the world while sitting just a little too close to someone else's Jimmy John's sandwich.

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Notice that hand creeping into the frame on the right. He claimed he didn't want the sandwich messing up the picture. I suspect his motivation had nothing at all to do with the aesthetics of the image. My man just wanted his sandwich!

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And like any good Jedi Sandwich Knight, my man used The Force to summons what was his and nobody got hurt. Executive Director or not, this is not the sandwich you seek, Ms. Compton!

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And now back to the image I was going for. As a personal project, I'm shooting in black & white for the remainder of the year. That choice works well here. If I hadn't already planned to shoot this in black & white because of my project, I most certainly would have converted this to b&w on the computer. I can't recommend the Fuji cameras highly enough for creating great b&w as well as other film simulations in-camera. The more I can get done in-camera, the less I need to do on the computer.

Chanel is not only a curator of art, she's also an artist. The video above is the first episode of what I'm (for now) calling my "Unscripted" series. You'll see her speaking briefly about an upcoming exhibit where she's showing her work. This was just an impromptu recording that I got the idea for in the seconds before I hit record and it came out exactly like I envisioned...without needing a bunch of planning or equipment. This was way more fun than hauling out a tripod and a bunch of lights, light stands, and other gear. Look for more of this in the future. I'll add a small shotgun mic for better audio, but that's about it.


It's ALWAYS a great time to get great family photos!

I shoot an alternative to the traditional, studio family portraits called Family Photojournalism. Family photojournalism is about documenting your family in a way that is true to life. There's no better place to do that than in your home or at some other place familiar to the family where everyone is relaxed and being themselves.  

Just think of it like having a fly on the wall with a camera. We'll do some traditional portraits in the first few minutes and the remainder of the session is about capturing candid family interaction.

Very little planning is required for this style of family photography. Everybody doesn't need to be dressed the same. You don't have to coordinate schedules and haul everyone to a studio. The only thing that's really required is your family engaged in some common activity...whatever stuff you guys normally do is fine. 

** Through December 31st, 10% of your session fee goes to the PTA of your choice **

Click here to get more info about a Family Photojournalism session or use the contact form below.