Sidekick Dojo Ricky and Randy Smith
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I caught Ricky K Smith working his ass off last night. 20180428. It was a late Friday night around 10pm. He had already put in a full day sharing his art, his style of martial arts. Ricky, his wife and several students and student/black belt/instructors were preparing for dignitaries like Jerry Piddington and students that were performing marathon like Katas to achieve their own Black Belts. His team was scrubbing the floors and Matts, cleaning the lockers and making any OCD student proud by having perfectly arranged boxes full of equipment ready to go. The front entrance was full of belts to achieve and earn and martial arts equipment including swords and sabers. In the office waiting room is a wall full of Martial Arts magazines, many of which the like of Jerry Piddington appear on the front page of with stories of @Ricky and Randy Smith being pioneers of their art and catching the attention of every major martial artists Star in the movie industry. Most of the Movie star martial artists were World Champions in their forms before they became famous. In my opinion they were lucky to get Ricky and Randy to take a break from training to become actors. You have to mention both Ricky and Randy together because they are The Gold Dust Twins from our era. While we were in school and barely making it out to the bus stop maybe carrying along a sandwich, Ricky and Randy had already run five miles that morning. Then after classes at school they went and trained some more. They have never let up. Randy has used his skills to save lives on the beach. Just the other day he calmed down a spring break riot and talked down 300 routy drunken kids into getting their act together and to not trash his beach with glass or trash. While the 20 something lifeguards are looking for their next date, Randy was saving a drowning victim that had knocked herself out on a buoy. You think he just sits there in his chair and looks good. But he has EMT and life guard training and so many levels of black belts that controlling the beach drunks of the day become easy. But the Smith brothers got together at the beach awhile back. One drunk was beating his significant other. Ricky and Randy found him in another hotel assaulting another woman. Ricky and Randy were solely responsible for getting this drunk under control while the police watched with pistols drawn. It turns out the bad guy had warrants for murder! See ya! I look forward to begin a series of visits that will allow me to photograph, do some video and document what it takes to keep our Salisbury youth and adults out of trouble. I am certain to make a trip to the beach to see Randy in action. I’d like to film a do over of his Bouy Fu moves! Thanks Ricky for taking time out from a long day to go over a few ideas!

12/15/18 10:32:04 PM

I had the great honor of photographing some of our country’s best martial artists judging aspiring young black belts. Sidekick Dojo sponsored many judges including Jerry Piddington. The entire team had been working since early morning. I arrived at 5pm and shot until 7pm. My main focus was to photograph Ricky K Smith, Randy L Smith and Jerry Piddington. There were many other world Class martial artists in attendance. Randy must have traveled all the way from Myrtle Beach which is five hours away.

The respect from students to teachers was nothing short of incredible. The concentration from the audience members and parents of the students, let’s just say the guardians in attendance were beaming with pride.

The students and teachers have spent thousands of hours getting in the physical shape it takes to be a martial artist in any form. Then the students exhibited dozens of different katas and forms that seemed impossible to remember. The judges were not easy and these guys don’t just get booted up in rank. They earn their belts. What is amazing is that the masters, @Ricky, Randy, Jerry and the rest could spot a movement down to the foot placement or hand placement of the different styles. Mr Piddington had us all close our eyes and the class had to tell which forms or katas the students were performing.
The shot of Ricky K Smith with Dale Earnhardt and the shot of Ricky and Randy's dad, Gene Smith were shot by two photographers unknown to me.
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