My journey to photography was a somewhat surprising one.
Taking photos was something I was always interested in. I remember as a kid dressing up my little sister as a fairy and making her jump on our trampoline so I could take a photo of her “flying”. I loved the idea of creating something magical with photos, something special aside from the regular everyday snapshots.
I think it was always there in the back of my mind. Honestly, there was so many times when I would orchestrate “photoshoots” of my friends and family. I had no idea that one day I would want to pursue it as a career, let alone run my own business.
I had people tell me that I should work at it, that I had talent. I don’t think that’s entirely true. I think at that point in time I just enjoyed doing it. I loved freezing a moment in time, making it magical, creating moments out of nothing.
I don’t believe that true talent exists. The concept is a myth. That may seem like a controversial statement and I understand how it can come across as immediately wrong. Of course talent exists! How do you explain child prodigies? Or people who pick up a skill effortlessly while others struggle? Well, that’s a simple answer. I believe that some people are inherently born with natural aptitudes for some things. However, these people are the exception to the rule. True talent is hard work and endless study. To become a master of your craft you need to practice and study and push yourself to your limits and break them.
Simply picking up a camera and taking photos and having them come out somewhat nice is not ‘talent’. You may have an inherent eye for composition or colour…but you don’t understand how cameras work or how to use light effectively. You don’t know how to guide your subjects, or edit the photos into a recognisable and cohesive style. You don’t know how to run a business, market yourself or work in environments you’ve never been to before.
My life was moving in a completely different direction before I started building my photography business. I was enrolled at uni, bouncing around from degree to degree. Originally I was doing sociology - which I enjoyed and still enjoy. Then I was in video game design, hoping to become a concept artist or writer for video games. Both of which I still enjoy doing. Photography was always a side gig, a hobby, something fun to do on the side.
Until it wasn’t. I was burnt out at uni. I couldn’t express my creativity freely and I felt trapped by limitations both personal and educational. While my time at uni is not something I regret, I know now that it was never supposed to be an end goal for me. I dropped out and picked up my camera with a new, fiery passion.
I made that life changing decision. For days, I couldn’t sleep with the knowledge of it coursing through my body. Finally, this was where I was supposed to be. I had discovered my purpose. And it was exhilarating.
There is nothing I love more in this world than taking photographs of the moments that we are guaranteed to forget. To create memories, and solidify our existing ones. To have tangible stories to tell to our children, and their children. One day, I will have my own children, and I will tell them this story. And they will have so many beautiful photographs to accompany it.