Jumping for joy and shaping shadows at the Desert Sun with Will Dean

Will Dean photographed by Eyoalha Baker for Jump for Joy Photo Project and Palm Springs Cultural Center Artist Residency

As we arrived at the Desert Sun building to share jumping joy with Will, I was impressed with the landscaping and towering architecture of the building. When we met up with Will, he let us know he was feeling a little under the weather – you would never guess by the stunning photos I captured of him gracefully jumping up and sharing his joy. I loved how the shadow of this jump joined in on the fun, it almost looks animated and takes on a joyful life of its own.

Get to know a little about Will:
Q: What inspires you to jump for joy?
I’m inspired to jump for joy when I’m surrounded by the beauty of Palm Springs, which I’ve called home for 10 years and which will continue to be a part of my life, no matter where the future takes me.

Q: How was your experience doing the jumping photos?
I was somewhat hesitant and uncertain it’s what I should do. I felt good afterward, encouraged by the photographer and crew. It was a positive, fun experience.

Q: How do you describe the feeling of joy?
When I was younger I thought joy was animated exuberance. Today I realize that joy, for me, is the sense of peace, awareness and contentment I glean from small pleasures and everyday moments as well as special experiences. Working on a project or artistic endeavor, I experience joy when I’m so deeply in the zone that I lose track of time and other foolishness. The creation naturally flows.

Q: What is your greatest passion in life?
Storytelling, in just about every imaginable form.

Q: How do you feel about being part of a collaborative community project that promotes joy?
Joy is something that’s lacking in the world, so if this project inspires anyone who sees it to smile or light up inside, it would be a gift to the community.

Q: If you could do anything in the world, what would it be?
Write, produce, direct a play.

Q: What are you working on?
I’m in the planning stage of a couple creative projects I’m excited about, but here’s a link to my day job as magazine editor: www.desertsun.com/desert-outlook.

Q: Mini bio or something special you want to share.
I’m hopeful that I’m outgrowing and moving away from labels, but today I identify as a queer man of color.

Twitter: @willdeanshow
Instagram: @willdeanshow
FB page: Desert Outlook
Other links: www.desertsun.com/desert-outlook

Thank you for taking a moment to share your joy Will!


Thank you to the Palm Springs Cultural Center inviting me to be your first Artist in residence and bringing the Jump for Joy Photo Project to the Coachella Valley.

If you live in the Coachella Valley and would like more info on the project, or would like to take part, email us: jumpforjoy@psculturalcenter.org


Follow Jump for Joy on:
Instagram: @jumpforjoyphotoproject
Twitter: @jumpforjoyphoto
Facebook: /JumpForJoyPhotoProject

Please... share the joy :)

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s