meridian photography

How I Got Here

I distinctly remember my first camera, a blue Fisher Price camera that used 110 file and a 10 use bulb flash.  Grandpa George gave one to me and one to my sister for Christmas the year I turned 6.  We each put an initial sticker on ours to distinguish them, and yes, I still have it.  One of these days I’ll find the pictures I used to take with it, including the portraits I made all of my fellow campers pose for on the last day of Girl Scout Camp in ’88.

As I got older, I posed my family, my stuffed animals, and anything I could get my hands on.  My favorite was a nesting doll family that I had (Father, Mother, Brother, Sister, Baby) that I was obsessed with arranging in every feasible combination possible.

Fast forward to my junior year in high school, when (on a music department trip to Disney) I realized that not being able to have any control over zoom, focus, light, or exposure meant that I didn’t get the photos I was looking for.  So I had a chat with my dad about switching over to an SLR (Single-Lens Reflex) instead of a PHD (Push Here Dummy).  For my high school graduation present, I received a Vivitar V-4000 35mm SLR (thanks, Dad!) and a trip to Paris (thanks, Mum!).  I landed in Paris with 10 rolls of 36 exposure 35mm film, fully expecting that they’d last me through the seven day trip.  I was wrong.  I ran out of film four days in, and was forced to make the five (wicked expensive) rolls that I bought last for the remaining three days.  After developing the prints (holy $ batman!) I was pleasantly surprised with what I’d gotten, and I was addicted to taking pictures.

Over the next years, I used countless rolls of film, made tons of prints for gifts, and generally enjoyed a lovely hobby.  In college, I got a job at a retail photo studio, and learned a lot more about taking Pictures of People… but I was not a fan of the work.  I met some amazing people, and learned a lot about color, quickly framing a shot, and getting clients (especially babies) to smile, but I was not a fan of the prescribed method of sittings.  Each client got our attention for 20 minutes and 9 shots.  Sadly, my experience with the studio soured the idea of becoming a photographer for me, so I hung up my camera for a while, and turned to other tasks (like getting my BA).

As time went on, the world began switching to digital more and more, and the cost of buying and processing film became worse and worse.  I eventually got a Nikon CoolPix, which served me well for a while, and allowed me to do more than the old PHD film cameras did, but it still wasn’t good enough.  So with my brother-in-law’s assistance, I picked out a Pentax K-10 DSLR (Digital Single-lens Reflex), and I was on my way to taking pictures again.

And here I am, more than 25 years after receiving my first camera, and I’m finally working as a photographer.  So I say thank you to those who have supported me along the way and to those of you who are just now joining me on my journey.


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