Allow me to glance back at how far I've come...
I'm so blessed to be able to operate full time as an independent, niche, visual, creative artist. I love my life and am so thankful to be earning a living doing something I'm passionate about.
I know my work is not the best or most amazing art work out there but it's so much fun, and I'll always be improving. I'm only going to get better as I continue doing, learning, and moving forward.
Here is my timeline so far
(I'm considering putting this in my ABOUT section somewhere but not certain just yet).
- Picked up a camera in high school back in 2008 as a non-serious hobby.
- Went to Chemeketa Community College for general studies 2 years, then Full Sail University Online for music production and entertainment business 2 years.
- Went full time in 2015 as an outdoor on-location traditional portrait service provider. Shot families, weddings, seniors, products, and music events.
- At the same time also worked indoor as a studio photographer at PicturePeople half of 2015.
- Was an unpaid intern, production assistant, and student under Erin Galey of InTheFlickr at RecordingRadioFilmConnection through out 2017.
- In 2019 began monetizing my personal model photography via a patreon account. Left patreon mid 2020 and now own my own digital online store.
- Been focused on fine art model photography specifically ever since. Turns out if you're good at something the world will pay you to keep doing it. It's been a beautiful journey so far and I can't wait to see what comes next.
I want to take the time to thank all of my fans, supporters, clients, friends, and family and everyone who has supported me in one form or another.
Earning a living as a working artist is not easy. It's not without consequence or challenging obstacles. I know more will come next year and afterward.
As a Christian, I believe it is by the Grace of God that I have been able to hold to my values and principles as a creative artist, and pull through any low times, as well as to be blessed to celebrate the high times. Allow me to celebrate some high times now...
Let's highlight some notable accomplishments from this year 2023!
- In 2023: the store has almost 500 photoshoots listed! That is huge! Most photographers, you have no idea how much work experience they actually have. It's easy to doctor an image but numbers don't lie and I hope the number of photoshoots on my store demonstrates my resolve and conviction to the art form well.
- In 2023: the model portfolios are underway and I'm happy to say we were able to discover and work with Ellison who is now listed as a featured model with her own portfolio on the store! Meeting Ellison and her mom was one of the best things to happen to me this year 2023! Her mom reached out to me at the beginning of 2023. We had a FaceTime meeting to discuss everything. Meeting went well and we made plans to shoot together in Seattle back in March! Her mom was kind enough to stick around when I locked my keys in the car and had to call AAA to come and rescue me. I gave them a hefty tip as a thank you for that. We ended up doing over 10 photoshoots this year 2023. They will all be up on my store portfolio ASAP.
- In 2023: I also met Brie and Lavender who reached out to me in Spring 2023. We have done several BFF photoshoots this year and I hope to work with them, as well as all the other models I've gotten to work with, again next year 2024!
- In 2023: I was contacted by a mom in LA interested in having me work with her 7 year old daughter Zoey. We had a FaceTime meeting and then I flew to LA to work with them! It was an amazing experience (albeit expensive but totally worth it) and I would very much like to work with them again next year 2024!
- In 2023: I was finally able to afford physical therapy for my lower back problems and also mental health therapy with a professional therapist. This is a huge deal to me because the way I see it, I am the machine, I am the business. If I'm unhealthy, my business will suffer. If I'm the best I've ever been then my work gets better and better. That's why my name is on it; so people know I am a person, a visual artist, not just a "company" or an "LLC" - while still also being an LLC and serious vessel committed to the arts.
Of course there were some things I originally thought were set backs in 2023 too. When Meta let go of all their moderation team employees and replaced them with AI algorithms, many content creators wrongfully lost their accounts for unexplained, unspecified, reasons. Social media does not have fair due process. My account with 16.4k followers was taken down. At first I was very sad about this.
Some people initially didn't know what to think and others didn't believe me and assumed I must have done something incorrect. But it is not my job to convince anyone they're wrong, or try to get someone back on my side. People will believe whatever they want. It doesn't matter what they think.
But I now know, at the end of 2023, that the loss of the big IG account had absolutely zero effect on my business. We're trucking-a-long as if nothing ever happened and I can't thank everyone enough for this.
Thank you all so much for your continued support. 2024 photoshoots are already being planned for Spring, Summer, and Fall! There are many photoshoots I want to do next year. I'll put out the model call again for anyone interested early Spring. Next year is going to be the biggest year of my photography career. We'll be flying out to LA at least once or twice. Hopefully we'll also get to work with other serious like-minded creatives and talented human beings we've never worked with before as well!