Growing up, I never knew photography was a passion. I just took pictures of whatever, especially animals, whenever I could. I never thought anything of it. As a graduation gift, I received a "real" camera from my grandfather who photographed as a hobby. It came as a complete surprise to me, but I was challenged to start taking photography courses and to see what I could do with a camera.
I did! I don't think anyone imagined my passion and vision for photography would play such a large role in my life. Even when I became critically ill, photography is what helped me fight my way through a time I should have never survived. After going through that time, I believe that having strong goals and purpose can help one beat nearly about anything. Even while bed bound, I was studying and researching all I could online to hone my skills.
When I finally was able to be up again, since I was so weak, I started using my iPhone to take photos of the world around me and to remind me of the many things I had to be thankful for. This turned out to be one of the best exercises I have ever done. I was no longer taking images to please others. For the first time since taking up photography officially, I started taking photos for me and me only. Something special happened. I started to have fun! I forgot about what others thought. I ended up developing a new perspective approach with my photographs that everyone around me seemed to enjoy. When I became healthier and stronger, I took that perspective with me to my "real" camera, my Nikon DSLR.
As I work to regain my health, I am going full steam ahead in continuing to have fun and experiment with the kind of images I can get. I have some amazing mentors that have been guiding and challenging me as well.
It has taking me a long time to get back to focus on photography again. I am very glad to be back and my aim is to not only make people smile, but to help and inspire others look at the world they view everyday with wonder.