The Journey Begins

Creator and Director Chris Yates reflects back on how this journey all began.

Creator and Director Chris Yates reflects back on how this journey all began.

Do you remember that awkward moment when you had this brilliant idea of photographing all 32 Jesuits living at Loyola Marymount University and the rector (also known as the Director of the Jesuit community) straight up said no? Good  —  because I do too.

Almost two years ago, when I brought this idea to Fr. Allan Deck  —  the rector  —  he was hesitant to move forward, as he did not initially take a liking to the idea. But I didn’t want to give up. I finally got him to agree to meet with me again a few weeks after our first meeting. I immediately went to work on my idea, which became an uphill battle.

The day of my first meeting with Fr. Deck, I had the class, “Archaeology and the Bible” with a Jesuit and Professor known as Fr. Fulco. I convinced him to agree to a photo shoot that weekend that would last “for half an hour” at most. Fast forward to that weekend, and four hours and many locations later, I finally had something tangible that brought the ideas in my head to life.

In the follow-up meeting I had with Fr. Deck, I let the work speak for itself. It was at that moment that Fr. Deck fell in love with the possibility of this project. He then gave me 10 names of Jesuits who would participate, believing that as a student with a full course load, a job and an internship three days a week, I wouldn’t have the bandwidth to handle much more. I then convinced the Jesuits I knew to participate, bumping the number up to 15. After our first shoot, word got around that this project wasn’t just a man with an iPhone taking photographs, but a legit setup. The rest of the Jesuits asked to participate, making our total number: 22.

Where did the journey go from here, you ask? Stay tuned to find out.

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Chris Yates