About Me & My Photograpy
I was born and raised in North Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, about half way between Milwaukee and Green Bay. While I enjoyed taking photos as a kid, I never developed a desire to pursue photography as a hobby or profession, but rather to document the fun times, holidays, trips, activities, and to make memories.
A few months before my 30th birthday, I made the big move to South Florida, Homestead to be exact. By this time I had a 35mm film camera but rarely used it. This was around the same time that the digital cameras were coming into play. People started migrating to the aptly named 'point 'n shoot' cameras that were unbelievably expensive in their early days; especially compared to the quality.
But as with everything, they became more mass-produced and quality went up and prices came down. By this time mid 2000's, my office had purchased a few of these cameras to document job sites. I 'borrowed' one for a long Labor Day weekend. Little did I know that this was the weekend that would change my perspective on photography. As I drove home that Friday evening, the most beautiful sunset was happening in front of me. I shot it on the entrance ramp to the Turnpike and nearly got clipped by a passing car for my troubles. When I looked at what I had captured I said to myself, "yeah, that was worth almost getting hit by a car". By the next payday, I bought one of my own; a Nikon Coolpix. I loved it! A few years later I bought myself a newer and faster one. And a few years later yet another new one.
But my desire to shoot decent shots was hitting the limit of my camera. I was out in the Everglades, Shark Valley to be exact, with my parents taking a tram ride when a bird took flight and I tried with no luck to get a shot off of it flying away. I was so frustrated! I saw a guy across the seat from me with one of those 'fancy cameras' rattling off about 10 frames per second. I asked him what kind of camera it was. I remember I looked it up immediately and was shocked at the price. Nearly 10 times what my little ol' point and shoot cost. It was a DSLR. And I wanted one.
About a year later I met a professional photographer and I picked his brain for quite some time. But ultimately discovered I couldn't afford one, certainly couldn't justify the expense if I could. Nope, that would have to wait. But not for too long, as very shortly I was given the opportunity to buy a gently used old beginner model, an Olympus E500 for the bargain basement price of $200. It sure did look good! I had absolutely NO idea how to use it and played with it until I realized this wasn't going to be easy. I took seminars, I went to a local camera store's free events, I even went to Miami Dade College and enrolled in a beginner to digital photography class. Only to find out that the instructor was there to teach composition not how to teach us how to use our cameras as they were meant to be used. I bailed after 3 classes. Nope, I would have to learn on my own. For the next 4 years I gave it little attention. I occasionally bought accessories; a tripod, some memory cards etc., but nothing helped my ability or understanding of how it worked. So it mostly sat in its case.
Until a friend shared an EcoFair event on Facebook. I clicked on it and read who was all going to be there and WHOOP! hit me like a freight train, there was a camera club! But not just a camera club, a South Florida National Parks Camera Club! Just what I had been looking for. I didn't make it to the EcoFair, but I did keep the club on my radar and an event came up that pushed me to finally join. It was a starry skies night shoot in the Everglades. Oh I was so excited. I joined right then and there and never looked back. Nine months later I had had enough of my Olympus [what I had dubbed] POS. It was terribly unsatisfying and frustrating. I was determined to buy a new Nikon. And after a nice gesture from the boss that Christmas, I had my Nikon D7100 with 2 kit lenses six days before Christmas.
After that special day, my confidence rose, the quality of my images rose fast, and my photography outings were constant. So much so that I bought the National Parks Pass as I was in and out of the Everglades almost every weekend. A few years later I was entering photo contests, and even joined another camera club, the Kendall Camera Club, for their regular critique meetings. I was bound and determined to excel at this photography game. Which led me to creating this website. As my exposure grew, people wanted to see my photos and Facebook wasn't cutting it. I decided to start a website and showcase my better images.
So sit back, scroll through the gallery pages and enjoy!