Back in 2019, I did a regalia photoshoot with a high school senior who wore her traditional regalia. To this day, they are still some of my favorites. Since then, I have been hoping someone, anyone, would ask me to photograph them in regalia again. A couple of months ago I was approached by Goldbelt Inc. to photograph some of their shareholders in regalia for their quarterly report and shareholder newsletter. It took everything in me to stay cool, because I had been manifesting this exact thing for years.
What is Goldbelt Inc.
Goldbelt is an Alaska Native Urban Corporation representing the region of Juneau, Alaska. It is owned by its indigenous shareholders. They promote cultural and community connection to all indigenous people with a special connection to ancestors and children. They do a variety of things for the community, including providing jobs, internships, and scholarships. They organize community events and cultural education classes for all ages. Most notably, own and operate the popular tourist (and elopement) experience, the Goldbelt Tram, which takes passengers up Mount Roberts, which is located in downtown Juneau.
One of the best parts of my job as a photographer is hearing about peoples stories. I was especially lucky to be a part of this event because not only did I get to hear people talk about their stories, but about their regalia, and how it was connected to them and the land. I am so incredibly grateful for Goldbelt and the people that showed up and sang and danced and told their stories, despite the chilling Alaska winter weather.