“There is only you and your camera. The limitations in your photography are in yourself, for what we see is what we are.”
Who am I?
I can still vividly remember the very first posed photo I ever took. I was 8 years old, and my sister was 5. It was my favorite time of year, and the pretty fall leaves were falling onto the grass. I went inside to ask my mom if I could borrow her camera. “For what?” she asked. “I have to remember this moment forever” I responded. I brought my sister under the tree, and had her sit down. I had her put one hand on the ground, the other on her hip, and I sprinkled some leaves on the top of her head. That became my first posed photograph. Soon after that day, I started drawing - A LOT. I saw the world in how I could replicate it. I would look at the clouds and think about the forms and colors it would take to recreate it. My parents started referring to me as the ‘artist’of the family.
I entered college as an architectural engineer. Being more ‘architectural’ than ‘engineer’, I soon switched my major to undecided. I explored being an architect, but realized that I didn’t care much on how the building was to function, but how it was going to look. A professor of mine mentioned that there was a profession out there called landscape architecture. I had no idea what that was. Growing up in a small town in central Pennsylvania, I have never met one of those, nor did anyone I know ever need the use of one. Reluctantly I decided to go in that direction, which turned out to be one of the best decisions of my life. Through college I enhanced my drawing abilities, and had the opportunity to travel the world. Spending a semester in Rome, I used drawing and photography to capture the beauty of a place draped in history. While there I traveled to Brussels, London, Ireland, Amsterdam, and all over Italy. It was during that semester that I fell further in love with photography. It was hard not to.
After college I dove into my profession, working in Washington, DC and trying to make a life for myself. After several years I met the love of my life, and we were engaged to be married less than a year later. Two years passed, we were married, and welcomed our first child. She was the missing piece of the puzzle that completed my life. My husband and I decided that it would be a great idea to purchase a professional camera to capture each and every moment of our precious daughters life. We took weekly photos of her and posted them on Facebook. No one said it directly to us, but we know it was overkill. But we were so proud of this perfect life we had created. We said that when we got our camera that we would not take her to professionals for photography; instead we will take all of the photos ourselves. But I couldn’t do that. I felt that a professional photographer could capture her in a way that I never could. In the years to follow, through the birth of our second child, I spent more time than I’d like to admit coming up with the clothing ideas and poses for their next shoot. Etsy became my very best friend. Everyone knew that if I were around, so was my camera. I would bring it with me to the mall just in case something “amazing” were to happen. I was always ready to capture the perfect moment.
I had a lot of friends and family members say that I should take my passion and make it a business. It was always a pipe dream of mine, especially because there were SO many photographers out there. How could I ever measure up to them? With a big push from my sister-in-law, I decided to make the jump. I’d take some classes to get to know my camera better, how to set up a shot, how to use natural lighting, etc. With my Photoshop classes in college, I already had the photo editing portion of the business under my belt. I spent a summer building a portfolio and working on getting my business out there. After that one successful summer, the rest is history.