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Who am I and How in the World Did I Get into Photography?

Updated: Sep 4, 2020

I suppose to answer that question, it probably helps to know where I'm from, because my upbringing played such a pivotal role in developing my interests and elements of my photography. I was lucky enough to be born and raised in the small town of Altoona, Wisconsin and spent my early years, particularly my summers, enjoying the wonderful Wisconsin wilderness and waterways.

And as an Eau Claire native (translated meaning Clear Water), I've been spoiled to be constantly in such close proximity to a plethora of beautiful lakes, streams, and waterfalls all in the midst of constantly changing seasons. Sometimes the seasons even seemingly change in the same day. But nonetheless, each type of weather brings its own beauty and mood to the landscapes.

It's probably no surprise then that landscape photography was indeed my first passion as far as photographic interests go. I received my first camera (a Canon Rebel t6, Crop Sensor DSLR) roughly three years ago as a Christmas present from family. At that time, I had only expressed moderate interest in photography, but a few days later I took my camera to a waterfall and I never looked back.

Fast forward a few dozen waterfalls, and the acquisition of three more primary cameras (a Nikon D800 and D750, both of which are full frame, and an Akaso V50 Pro Underwater camera), my journeys have taken me to adventures I would have never dreamed of prior to receiving that first camera.

In the three years since, I've photographed dozens of waterfalls across the United States. I've walked mountain ridges in Banff National Park in Canada. I've sat under the Milky Way at 3am listening to coyotes and other critters move in the shadows unseen. I went swimming with manatees and been unnerved by the sheer size of their enormous frames swimming within inches of me. And most recently, I traveled through Europe capturing romantic moments in the mist of a cold evening under the Eiffel Tower and Austrian waterfalls escaping through the alps.

Needless to say, my love of landscape photography has only grown.

But now it is time for a new adventure which is precisely why I am writing this blog and creating this website.

When I started out with photography, shooting landscapes was the perfect introduction into photography. I was free to experiment and learn without the pressure of taking someone else's photo. But after ample time to master the photographic language and holy trinity of aperture, ISO, and shutter speed, not to mention learning the complex editing techniques involving a variety of programs to accomplish tasks like panorama stitching, focus merging, HDR, frequency separation, masking, etc.... you get the point.

As I gained confidence, I came to really appreciate and enjoy the artistic expression involved with portrait photography. There is something truly satisfying with capturing an individual in a way that highlights the best parts of who they are. Especially when that best part involves their significant other. For this reason, I've tremendously enjoyed shooting my first wedding and engagement sessions where I've been able to capture some truly amazing moments and preserve them for a lifetime.

So here I am, ready for another adventure, and eager to see where it takes me whether it leads me off to another Wisconsin waterfall or helping you preserve a precious moment of yours.

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