Hard Work Pays Off

I debated how to phrase and share this. I am very excited, very blessed with many of the opportunities I have had as a photographer. I know in the scope of things I am young, I am learning, my equipment isn’t super high end, or my style can be thought of as too raw. That I need more studio experience, or better studio backdrops, and so on and so forth.

What many do not know is I never initially set out in life to be a photographer. I know; now, to me it seems crazy to think I didn’t intentionally set out to be a photographer, I love it, I can’t not take photos, but there was a time when it wasn’t my dream. You see art has always been in my blood, a passion that I want to be successful at but I thought I’d go more author or fine artist route.

I actually devoted 16 years to painting, drawing, and learning those mediums. I loved it but not as much as I loved it when that camera was put back into my hand. Those other mediums they weren’t as natural for me, I had to work hard to do what even more talented friends and peers made look effortless at times. Then the camera allowed me to blend my art knowledge with technology and create in a new way. I was hooked, I was devoted to learning to be better.

I was also extremely lucky in the beginning. I have had many people ask me how I have gotten where I am, many whom studied it in college, who it was always their original dream. In the beginning I did it for fun, I photographed my roommate in college— a buddying actor at the time, a headshot I had taken got her noticed by the people of Perks of Being a Wallflower. At the time they were filming in Pittsburgh, she landed a screen time extra bit on the film and that kinda kicked off my headfirst fall into photography.

Talent will get you so far but the people and connections you make really open doors. I have worked hard on the connection side of things and my best friend does it even better and has opened doors for me I never thought to pursue myself. Last year an introduction turned in to a three day photoshoot of my dreams.

Literal dreams people. I had watched this talented persons show, I was in awe of the beauty he created— also developed a wicked crush on the steampuke esq coat in one act— but I literally laid awake the night after the show thinking of the moments, the swell of anticipation, and I eventually dreamt of the photographs I would love to take.

The next day I was asked to take a few images, I was excited, thrilled, I could literally go on but I took the images and going against my nature then I more actively allowed back of screen access— I usually show a few here and there but I take duds like everyone else and I have a hard time relying on that tiny screen three inches for my eyes isn’t going to mean clear and sharp. But I was just so thrilled by seeing how happy they were with the images I couldn’t not let them see, that turning into backstage access, amazing photos.

This shoot happened over a year ago. I know you are just hearing about it right…. I am a good secret keeper— you never saw any photos, yep because they aren’t publicly available! That was hard for me I was just working on growing my instagram, working on being more active on those platforms.

But just like a year of hard work after a decade of rodeo photography lead to the publication of a 156 page coffee table book— great for autographs so definitely grab your copy for this season! — link at top and bottom of page—

A year of waiting lead to exciting news for me. My images will get to live as marketing material in brochures for the show, that I will get to do it all again one day— invited for a second shoot— and then after all that I log onto my facebook and see one of my images shared to promote the work they are doing on their show.

Folks, I could name drop and brag but truly it isn’t about that it is about the hard work, the years of dedication and this small step forward toward my dream. It is about someone who worked so hard to build their dream loving what I did enough they want to use it, and continue working with me. I am truly a blessed and lucky individual.

So I am going to share the image they did on FB. To have some fun with it those who recognize the individual from the profile can be in on the know because I totally hid the name… Not because they asked me too but because I hate bragging but love the photo and wanted to share.