It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are. (E.E. Cummings)

There are places I want to go and things I want to do. How do I become the person, the photographer, that I want to be? Two careers that I am interested in are LIFE or National Geographic photographer. I want to widen people’s horizons, advocate for different concerns, report on all sorts of places. Sure there might be a bit more stability in settling down in a certain region and working as a wedding photographer, but am I in the photography business for money or for the love of it? Where do I see myself in twenty years?

Every time I see a photo that has impacted people, changed the way we see the world, there is a desire in my heart to do the same. Even if it is risky, scary, beyond my level of courage. Even if my heart trembles and my mom frowns. I want to make a difference.

A self-assignment that I want to do is to take my good ol’ trusty 35mm camera and a dozen rolls of Kodak Tri-X film out into the streets of Charlottesville and photograph the locals. But in a behind-the-scenes sort of way. I want to photograph the homeless musicians that line Downtown. I want to photograph the refuges and immigrants. I want to photograph the elderly and record their stories. I want to photograph the rough and tough. What holds me back? Timidity. When it comes to approaching people to photograph them, I avoid that – it makes me nervous!

If I am going to become the professional I really want to be, I am going to need a bit more courage.



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