I have always loved taking pictures, by the thousands. Thank goodness for the digital age because I’d be completely broke if I had to buy film and have every photo developed. For the last several years I have wondered if becoming a photographer was something I should try. If it was something I could do successfully.
My first shoot was in 2009 for a neighboring family and quite honestly I did not do a very nice job. At one point there was a plastic blue baby pool and a big brown base garbage can in the background! I knew nothing of posing, lighting or the settings on my camera – which was a very simple point and shoot Canon that I eventually dropped into the East China Sea by accident. However, I do remember really enjoying taking their photos.
Dropping my carmera turned out to be a good thing. In 2011 I was days away from giving birth to our daughter and I needed a camera. An impulse buy led me to buy my first decent camera, a Sony Cyber-shot. I still didn’t really learn anything outside of shooting in the green automatic mode, but slowly I started googling tips for lighting and outdoor photography to improve the photos I took each year for our Christmas card – because I was too cheap to pay a real photographer.
At the end of 2015 an old friend came to visit in Okinawa for his photography project, Veteran Vision Project. He came to our home for a photo shoot with my husband and we talked a little about the Christmas photos I had on the wall. Devin Mitchell is an amazing man and an equally amazing photographer by the way. I highly recommend checking out his work and if you ever have the chance to work with him or have him shoot you, jump at that chance.
Hearing Devin’s opinion sparked my buried thoughts of becoming a photographer. A few days later I saw a post on Facebook regarding a course offered through Auburn University, a Photography Entrepreneur course. A few days after that an online forum that I frequent started a photography sub board. Thanks to that board I started to really play with my camera and the spark started to blow up.
What finally pushed me over the edge was a tragedy. A dear cousins child ended up in the hospital and the prognosis was not good. It caused me to remember an organization called Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep and I realized that I wanted to be someone who could provide that service for families dealing with tragedy. So baby Guardian, I pray for you and I also thank you for inspiring me to move forward with my photography.