Sharing jumps and joy with Jason Nagaia in Palm Springs

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

I met up with Jason in one of the Duluth Park parking lots to scout out a backdrop for his jump. He was instantly warm and open to exploring and playing. I remembered passing by the Friends of the Palm Springs Animal Shelter which is beside the park and has beautiful architecture and landscaping, so that’s where we went to do his jumps. We spoke a little about the power of joy and then the jumping began, Jason did several jumps and they all turned out beautifully. Feel the joy!

Get to know Jason little bit:
Q: What inspires you to jump for joy?
A:
I am inspired by goodness. In life, it’s easy to look for the bad things in people or situations, but I make an effort to do the opposite daily. You can find goodness everywhere and embracing it makes you want to jump and be free!

Q: How was your experience doing the jumping photos?
A:
It was a joyful and fun experience! I was not sure what to expect but was surprised at how much fun and freeing the experience would be! Eyoälha had a wonderful energy and was a pleasure to work with.

Q: How do you describe the feeling of joy?
A:
For me the feeling of joy is like a ball of light in your soul that is stimulated by positive interactions and experiences, and one has the opportunity to share that glow with others. I was fortunate to have two loving parents who came from poverty and created a comfortable life for themselves and our family through hard work and perseverance. They always encouraged me to be myself and to always have an open loving heart that I could share with others. I like to surround myself around positive happy people which helps me maintain a hopeful and joyful attitude. My soul lights up whenever I see my true friends, and I strive to make them feel equally important. Having this attitude is what gets me through tough times and helps keep me moving forward, even in the darkest of days.

Q: What is your greatest passion in life?
A:
My greatest passion in life is traveling. Last year I was fortunate enough to visit 6 new countries. Traveling presents an opportunity to step outside our comfort zones and learn about other people and their cultures. When I was in college I spent a semester in Paris which is when this passion began. There is something about immersing yourself in a culture and living as the locals do that is enlightening and educating. I hope to one day live overseas again!

Q: How do you feel about being part of a community project that promotes joy?
A:
I am absolutely honored to be included in this project. There are so many challenges that we have been facing as a nation that have left us divided and distraught. It is important to be involved with our communities and to share our joy with others so that we can be reminded of ways that we can be unified rather than divided. There is goodness and joy within all of us and its projects like these that remind us of that.

Q: If you could do anything in the world, what would it be?
A:
I am blessed to be doing exactly what I love, which is traveling the world and spending time with people that I love dearly. What more could I ask for?

Q: What are you working on or creating?
A:
I wish I were more creative! At the moment my focus has been on DIY projects around my home. I am quite handy so things can get quite interesting!

Q: Mini bio or something special you want to share.
A:
Just some advice to live joyfully.
· Start off every day striving to be the best version of yourself.
· Stay away from negative people, they have a problem for every solution.
· Cherish those who enjoy your company. Learn and support the things that are important to them!
· Give to those that are less fortunate than you. Time and money are both equally helpful.
· Be present in the moment. Don’t worry about yesterday, or tomorrow.
· Share your smile with others, it’s contagious.

Connect with Jason:
Twitter: @jnagaia
Instagram: @jabberjase
FB page: /jason.nagaia

Thank you for your thoughtful answers and for sharing you joy with me Jason!

—-

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 :)

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