Every now and again someone asks my photography story. My answer is simple,” It must be in my genes.” My mom always had a camera and knew how happy it made people when she happened to snap a photo and give them that stolen moment in time.
I started my own photographic journey when I was in high school. Writing for the school newspaper and taking photos was one of my jobs. Another perk was meeting the new students… and boy did that work out well for me! I got to interview this new guy who had dark hair, dreamy eyes and a killer smile. Then he spoke. It was like he knew what to say and checked off all my boxes for what “my type” was. He was into snowboarding, played guitar, had been in a band…so pretty much any high school crush material.
We became fast friends and soon I was telling him on the bus that I wanted to marry him…. but that is another story….. Anyway, he was very creative and helped me look at the world in new ways and encouraged me to go for my dreams, after breaking my heart at graduation.
Off I went to college. Got my AA degree and took photography classes thinking that may be my passion. The school had a dark room so I learned how to develop film and play with new techniques.
It was time to move to a university and I just knew I wanted to be a photojournalist! I had checked out this amazing art school in California and thought that has got to be my path…..then that boy came back, you know the cute snowboarding guitar playing one. He told me he loved me and wanted to be together. I just couldn’t resist that guy. I changed my plans to Southern Oregon University which was a few hours away and gave our love a shot. We took turns driving every weekend.
I started school in a new town and took classes on how to write articles and work on my art. It was a great time, but something was missing. Then a friend learned I knew my way around a camera and asked me to shoot their wedding. I said yes! I had been to a few weddings by then, and knew the drill. It was an amazing on the job learning experience, but I had found my thing. I signed up for photography small business classes and got my degree.
By that time the snowboarding guy was finally graduated from high school… Oh, did I mention he was a few years younger…. That summer I married him at a garden and he became my husband and business partner.
Sixteen years later we are still in love and have went on to travel to incredible places, backpacked with our 2 year old around Hawaii, and move to the other side of the country. We made our home in the Smoky Mountains which has been the perfect backdrop. You never know what you may inherit from your parents, I just know now I am grateful because it has given me this life I love.