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Tlingit and the Orca

Tlingit and the Orca


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This photo illustration combines  a Northwest native American dancer with the orca.  Fausto Paulo, Tlingit/Athabascan, was photographed at a Southern California Powwow.  During a break I asked if I could photograph him.  He signed a release and afterwards we talked about many thing including the Orca. many subjects were covered including the orca. According to Northwest Coastal Native Americans, orca was created by a hunter who carved a “blackfish” out of yellow cedar and commanded it to kill his wicked in-laws.  Orca carried out the command and returned to the Tlingit man, Natsalane, who then ordered orca never again to prey on humans.  To this day, orca, a top predator of the sea, doesn’t eat people.   The orca is not a whale, but rather a member of the dolphin family. Tlingit consider orca a custodian of the sea. The Tlingit, their name means “People of the Tides, live in an area ranging from coastal British Columbia to Alaska. The Athabascan live in the neighboring interior.


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