When I was 17, my dad gave me my very first 35mm SLR, a Yashica, with a 50mm lens. I was a freshman in college and so excited about my future, whatever it may be. Little did I know at that time that my dad— in giving me that camera— changed my life forever. (Thanks, dad ❤️)
I had gone to an art high school in New York City, Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School of Music, Art, and the Performing Arts. We called it LaGuardia. People knew it as the “Fame” school. I studied fine art— painting, graphic design, art history, and all the academics, as well. After painting what seemed to be my ten-thousandth still life, I knew I would never be a painter because I had almost zero patience for it. But I loved art so much.
So freshman year of college, with that first camera, I discovered a whole world of artistic instant-gratification. I enrolled in the one and only photography classes I ever took in order to learn to develop my own film and print my own photos.
The class taught me the technical knowledge photography, but I had artistic part covered coming from LaGuardia. I loved all the technical stuff as much as I loved the creative side. The darkroom was my respite for all four years.
I’ve been taking pictures my whole life and I love taking pictures of people. I photograph people very well. Not because they are made to look good, but because they look real. And real is true is honest, and honesty creates excitement because with honesty, you don’t know what someone’s reaction will be. You don’t know what you’re going to get, or what’s going to happen. Whereas if you lie, you know what’s going to happen because you’re manipulating the truth to get what you want. But I tell the truth with every frame of film I burn, or digital memory card I fill with image files.
I’ve traveled the world taking pictures. I lived in New Zealand and Australia as a photographer making amazing money doing what I love in other countries! I’ve photographed weddings to fashion campaigns to food for famous chefs to world-travel to celebrities for big magazines to dogs to horse races— and every single time I knew those photos were going to give someone joy. They’re going to get the truth of life.
I photograph what I love: people, scenery, and food. And every day I get to wake up and do what I love. Photography has changed my life in ways my seventeen year old could have never imagined.
From the amazing people I’ve gotten to meet and work with, to the beautiful places I’ve gotten to visit, live in and explore, and to the money I’ve made…
And it can change yours!
I know you love taking pictures. Everyone loves taking pictures. Everyone. If that weren’t true then camera phones wouldn’t exist. But some of us dream of taking pictures all the time, and of something we really love so much that we want to do it every day.
If you’ve ever fantasized or dreamed of being a photographer— not just a smartphone photographer— a real photographer with a professional DSLR or Mirrorless Camera, I encourage you to pursue it. Not only do I encourage you, I feel like you must do it. It can change your life in ways that maybe you’ve only dreamed of if you’re willing to give it a shot.
It could bring you great joy, and no matter what you pursue, whomever you shoot for, it will bring them great joy, too. Imagine doing what you love because it brings not only yougreat happiness and joy, it brings it to others, as well. How amazing is that??
Pretty amazing, actually.
Just as my dad opened up my world, I hope to open up yours. So give it a shot (see what I did there?)
If you’re willing to start photographing people, Click Here to Download my FREE eBook, Shooting People. . . But In a GoodWay, to learn the top 5 things you need to know and do to take better people pics. You can use these techniques with any camera, even a smartphone 😉
Cheers and Happy Shooting! And please leave a comment below 😀