Lucas Zhao Photography


Discovering the meaning of "ohana"

Perspective on life will definitely change if you ever get your camera equipment stolen from you in Maui, in the dark, with a man with a machete Life since that moment in time, November 3rd, 2017 (coincidentally the same day I left Michigan to live on the road and pursue this dream two years ago to the date) has been a journey of gratitude, healing, and understanding. 

Along my camera equipment being stolen, I was essentially assaulted in a road rage incident and held up and machete point. A chipped tooth and more than a few layers of trauma to process, the rest of my time spent on the Hawaiian islands were more focused on self love and surrendering to the lessons of Creator through the volcano Goddess the Hawaiians refer to as "Pele" whom has become a dear friend of my own soul.

Pele Goddess of the volcano. (Volcano National Park, Hawaii)

Pele Goddess of the volcano. (Volcano National Park, Hawaii)

There have been many perspectives on the situation with law enforcement involved. Without getting into too much detail, I will say that I have requested to not prosecute this individual for multiple reasons. Most of which have been developed along my path to understanding with compassion and empathy for individuals growing up in a situation and homeland constantly threatened by the increasing development of colonization and western lifestyle. 

There were tears, there was laughs, and there most importantly, there were incredible human beings in my surroundings and environment on Maui to assist me to understand my place in such a humbling experience.

Realizing I haven't given community and fellow human beings enough of an emphasis on these journeys within these photographs, moments that are shared when created are the most important part of this journey on Earth. We are blessed to experience this human life with empathy, compassion, and every other emotion that comes from relating to another human being (positive and not so much so). I am glad to share with you some of the incredible people making this journey worth it...  to me, creating the true meaning of the Hawaiian word for family: 'Ohana' 


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