|I am a photographer, performer, and world traveler based in San Francisco and I've been in the Professional Photographic industry for 18 years.|
Most of my life I've had a camera in my hand and by my freshman year of college I was shooting events professionally. After college I spent 10 years in Hawaii working for many photographers getting my chops doing commercial, athletic, wedding, and portrait shoots. I shot 500 weddings. I learned each photographer's tricks. I became skilled at doing many types of photography and working with all kinds of people in diverse situations.
Paralleling this, I led another life as a professional performer. I worked with numerous companies doing contemporary modern dance, acting, butoh, fire dancing, stilt walking, and giant puppetry. Through performing I traveled the world and I loved it. I soared through collaborating with people, developing characters, expanding my range of expression, and bringing joy to thousands of people.
But it wasn't easy to connect these two parts of my life, let alone to integrate them professionally. I thought I had to choose. But I loved them both so I then tried to hide one life from the other and while that seemingly worked, my creative spirit felt restricted.
My journey to resolve this led me to continue developing both streams and stay open to if and how they'd come together. In that time my photography business expanded in multiple directions and shooting portraits, corporate events, and weddings took me to China, Mexico, Korea, India, Australia, Thailand, Bermuda, Colombia, and beyond. The performer in me also grew and took me to festivals, parties, and events and fueled my creative fire.
Every photographer has a unique point of view and gift they bring to the table. Mine is to evoke and capture people's exuberant expression. To me this is what makes a great image stand out from the rest: aliveness. I've found this to be just as true doing corporate work as in weddings or portraits taken of aerialists swinging from silk in the trees. Everyone is diverse, every moment unique, and bringing people out of their shells and translating this vitality into frozen moments is my gift.
In seeing what made my work stand out I began to relax about the division of photographer and performer. Ironically, as that happened I began to be asked to bring my performance gifts to the weddings and corporate events I was photographing.
Creativity, vitality, aliveness - call it what you want - is in all of us in abundance. We just have to let it out and stop being afraid that we or others won't like what we find when we take our expression to the next level. The world, marketplace, and online landscape we live in now invites this and celebrates individual creativity, the blending of different personas, and the uniqueness we each have to offer.
Life is art, and life is discovery. The story of this is always evolving. Expression catalyzes this. Photography captures it.
You can check out my blog here and my wedding work here. I'm also on Facebook.