It's normal for us as we're growing up to try different things, to dress different ways, all in search of figuring out who we are. Finding photography was just that for me. It was about figuring out who I was all along. It just took me getting my little "Aha!" moment to realize it.
I was your average kid... I'd say. I did well in high school so I could get it done and over with so when I graduated I would be able to move out of the small town I was from and make the life for myself that I wanted. I went off to college in hopes that I would graduate with a psychology degree and go on to graduate school.
On Dec. 28th it'll be exactly a year since I decided to quit college and do photography on my own.
It took a lot of explaining, especially to my family, but I believe it was the right decision for me to leave. I had the option of staying in school and just switching my major to photography, but I felt like I would just be wasting more money than I would be getting out of it. Having to pay for school myself it was becoming quite an expense among my already housing and living costs. I was struggling to pay for everything with just a part time job, and I was spending more time learning photography at home than I was paying attention in my general classes. I will always be grateful for my first year of school. It was there that I realized photography could be more than just something I loved growing up, but it could actually be what I do with my life. I didn't think that was possible.
Going to school for photography is always a tough question, but I think it's a personal decision and a personal decision only. So by no means do I think school for photography is a bad thing. It's just something that fits people differently, that's all. It also greatly varies for each person. I am a very self-motivated person and I can research something for weeks if I care about it enough. But I believe those who learn better from others, school is their best option.
With 2010 coming to a close I'd like to reflect on just how far I've grown and changed as a photographer in the last year.
Here are few pictures that I took over the course of the year:
Jan. 2010 - This is a self-portrait I took while I was practicing different ideas I had with a window drape:
Jan. 2010 - This is Taylor - she was the first stranger I had ever shot with who wanted to model for me.
Feb, 2010 - Practicing by taking self-portraits weekly.
March, 2010 - A conceptual shoot with a friend, Rachel. Starting to play around with natural lighting and shadows.
April 5, 2010 - I made the dress pictured below for my first fashion location shoot with model, Jenn.
April 19, 2010 - An updated self portrait.
May, 2010 - Another shoot with Jenn. Shot at my dad's farm. I had my friend, Diana help me with hair and the body paint.
June, 2010 - This is Tasha. We met online after seeing her work with other photographers in the area. Practicing still with fashion, lighting, and shadows.
July, 2010 - This is Rikki from Ignite - she was the first agency model I had ever worked with.
August, 2010 - I spent all of August doing commissioned work. Here is one of the pics from the 2nd wedding I shot.
Sept., 2010 - This is Lily from Ignite - this is the first time I had ever worked with a Hair & MUA.
Oct., 2010 - I met up with Rikki again to practice using my lighting and to take some simple portraits.
Nov. 2010 - This is Caroline from Ignite Models, this is the first time I had a whole team (a hair & MUA, a stylist, and assistants) working on a shoot together.
Dec. 2010 - Lastly, a a final self portrait for 2010. It's been a good year.
I have high hopes for 2011 as I am celebrating the new year in New York City.
2011 can only get better.
stay tuned. :)