“I made both of the things that we’re wearing.”
“Are you a seamstress?”
“No no, I’m a hot glue wizard.”
"It's not a costume. I wear this hat all the time – summer, winter, whatever. I don't know. I just seen it and I liked it so I picked it up. I don't want to be all dramatic with it and say every day, every second, every minute 'cause you know it's not like that - I take it off. Mama has the heat on inside you know, you be sweatin'.”
“I've been doing this since the beginning. My friend just invited me out and suggested that I be the the Grand Marshal for Life and I agreed. I think the concept is so good because red beans and rice on a Monday -- you can’t beat that. And look at the uniforms! Red beans and rice on a Monday -- that’s a tradition!"
“I’m from the international rice capital of the world -- a little crawfish town called Crowley, Louisiana. You know, the crawfish that you eat in New Orleans is not real Louisiana crawfish. You go to Breaux Bridge, Crowley, the more country towns, and they raise the crawfish in rice fields... So you have huge, delicious crawfish and they’re not fishy at all."
“We started dating during Mardi Gras four years ago. We met at a housewarming party but it was right before Mardi Gras and when the Saints won the Superbowl so we had like a two week party afterwards, and we fell in love. And then after that we had to figure out how to get along with each other.”
“What’s your secret?”
“He just says ‘okay, whatever you say!’ It's his secret. We got married last October -- Halloween night."
Editor's note: Multimedia artist Claire Bangser created NOLAbeings as a portrait-based story project that marries image and text. Inspired by the Humans of NY project, it stems from the belief that we can all learn from one anothers' stories. Primarily featured on Instagram (and tumblr), Claire meets people in coffee shops, grocery stores, living rooms, sidewalks, and learns something about each individual through a snapshot conversation and image. After discovering and falling in love with the project, editors at NolaVie asked to post a weekly roundup of her photos.
Claire Bangser is a New Orleans-based photographer and filmmaker with a passion for storytelling. She is the creator of NOLAbeings and has produced work for local, national, an international organizations and media since 2009. Highlights include a three-month bike tour storytelling project on the west coast, documentation for a four-month National Geographic Young Explorer’s grant in Turkey, and New Orleans-based digital storytelling projects like Cry You One and BOUDIN: The New Orleans Music Project. Find more of her work at www.clairebangser.com.