"The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera." -- Dorothea Lange
Photography is just something I do. It's a part of me, like breathing or sleeping or reading. I have always dabbled in creative pursuits-- writing, drawing, painting, and when I was growing up, was convinced I wanted to be an artist or a writer. But growing up, and those people who are charged with getting us there, all have a way of conditioning those inborn dreams and interests right out of us. So, I got jobs, married a wonderful guy, and we spent the last 30+ years raising three great kids, and an assortment of critters as well, along the way. My watercolors and pens gave way to a camera, partly because we needed to record our family's evolution, and partly because cleaning paints and markers off of walls gets old after a few turns.
My love of the outdoors, my time spent at our kids' games and events, and my fascination with clouds, storms, and skies, all finally came together when I found myself not just shooting the life and times, but shooting a whole lot of other things that I encountered in my world. When we migrated from California to the Midwest, it was as if something clicked, and photography became an obsession. Though I regret slightly having not realized the infinite subject matter I had before me living in California, the seed had been planted long ago, and the move to Illinois had triggered germination. It hasn't been all easy-peasy. I have spent a lot of time getting in my own way, and I still have a lot of learning to do; but now I know beyond a doubt what I want to be when I grow up, and no one can convince me it's an impractical dream. I want to be a photographer. And I am.
I shoot the things I love, things I know well, and some things I know little about. I find that my camera has not only shown me a lot about the world around me, but continues to introduce me to myself. Photography is something that is always teaching me to see without the camera.