Launching the new website for this business has been more than exciting. I’ve talked so long about taking photographs and writing for a living and wasn’t sure, until recently, that I was going to give it an actual go.
I’ve been snapping photographs since I was a kid. I think I started learning to love taking photographs by watching my Grandma Martha shooting everything that happened all around her. My Grandmother was never without a camera during any sort of family function. She was sort of famous for it. Here’s Grandma, and her camera. She loved it. And what’s more she got immense joy from it. I watched my Mom and most of her siblings follow in Grandma’s footsteps. Each with camera in hand taking loads of photos at every family function. My uncle Tom especially, loved photography. Still does. He always had the latest camera equipment. I loved the mystery of his cameras. All the lenses, the bag, the tripod, all the “stuff” that went with. I wanted to know about it.
My first camera was a 110 my parents got me some time in the 70s. A pocket instamatic, brand name forgotten, it was a treasure. Slip in the cartridge, point, and shoot. I was hooked. I think it had one of those magic cube flashes. Four flashes on one cube. It rotated on it’s own to the next side each time you used it. Magic. I loved my 110. My own camera, finally. I was able to take photos all the time. Or at least all the time I had film to put in it, which wasn’t all the time, but I managed to get film occasionally. Enough to keep me motivated to take shots.
From the 110 I moved up to an actual 35mm. A GAF 35mm. My parents ended up with this camera, which I think they got from brother, Monte. I borrowed it when I was in high school and took it to the beach. Sadly, I got sand in it. Lame. My parents said if I paid to get it fixed I could have it. A few babysitting jobs later and that baby was mine. I loved it. It was the camera I used in my first photography class in high school. I used it, along with the second camera I got, the Minolta X-700, for the photography classes I took in college. I got the Minolta from an aunt on my dad’s side. She was really into photography as well. In those days I was learning a lot of dark room technique. For those of you too young to know what photography was like before digital, dark rooms were where the film, yes film, was developed. I had big plans, some day, to have my own dark room. Alas, that never happened because digital happened instead.
The first digital I used was a Kodak point and shoot 3MP Easyshare camera. Not long after, wanting more depth in the photos, I moved to a Canon SD250, quickly followed by an SD500 and finally, and SD750. These, however, still weren’t quite good enough. I wanted to duplicate the experience I’d had with using lenses, being able to shoot in manual mode with a lot of options, and have the magic of all the “stuff” in the bag. My first foray into digital SLR was the Canon Rebel XT. I still have it, and I still love it. With Canon EF lenses that can be used on more than one camera body, and a myriad of lens choices, I started easing my way further into digital SLR. I was one happy camper. And what I found was that the darkroom was a thing of the past. A computer, software, and there you go. No more photo development. No more chemicals. No more having to store loads of negatives in notebooks. I have to tell you, I love it. Adore it. Adore it so much I moved up to my latest camera, the Canon 5D MarkII. A true thing of beauty. All the lenses I’d purchased for the Rebel fit the 5D so I can use both, interchanging lenses, and am able to get most of the shots I want, in the way I want to do them. Awesomeness.
People ask what style of photography I shoot, and there are many. I was actually looking up all these different types and found that I shoot in all of them at various times. Mostly I would say I like the candid. Getting the shot that’s happening. Not posed, not trying for a certain thing, just capturing the organic flow of events. I have also shot weddings where it’s important to get all those portraits posed just right. I guess I would say I don’t like to pigeon hole myself. My stuff doesn’t fit into a box. I’m eclectic and it follows that so is my photography. I am constantly learning and hopefully growing. My work is ever changing. Influenced by current events in my life and the world. Influenced by the light of the day and my mood. Influenced by life.
This has been and continues to be a journey. More a life pursuit than a career. A constant quest for a better snapshot of the world around me. Because that’s it really, there’s always another shot just around the corner or over the hill. Always. I see photographs everywhere, in everyday things. Meaning that everywhere I look there’s something beautiful or strange or shaped just right. It’s my passion. Started all those years ago watching my Grandmother and then getting the gift of that 110. Thanks parents. And I mean that with all my heart.