Four years ago, while studying fine arts at Brigham Young University, a good friend bought me a camera. I loved the arts, but I always struggle with the idea of being locked-up in a studio, alone and isolated. I am a deeply social person, and painting, drawing, and illustration were so solitary. I spent a couple semesters soul searching and major changing when this good friend came out west to visit my wife and me. After a week long visit, and many late night conversation about frustrations, fears, and dreams: he went out and bought me a Canon Rebel T3i, the catalase behind my passion for photography. I went on to study photography and videography at BYU, and while digital photography introduced me to the medium, I fell in love with film very quickly.
MY FILM PHILOSOPHY
There is something terribly romanic about film photography. Film photography is more than an image, more than a picture. When you take a photograph on film; light enters the camera threw the lens, which reacts with tiny silver particles on the film. The combination of light and silver creates a film negative that can be developed and then scanned to create a digital image. All of that just means, light from the very moment you take the picture is captured on that film and changed into something more. More precious than the pieces of light and silver alone. A child’s smile, the moment she says, “yes” or he says “I do”. All of the moments in life that change us forever. Film changes with us.
My style as a photographer tends to reflect that same sense of “the moment.” I’m not big into overly formal or staged images. A great teacher once told me that life isn’t about looking for the extraordinary. It’s about seeing the extraordinary in the everyday. In my experience, the moments that mean the most are always the forgotten and unplanned seconds in between. I approach photography in the same way.
My greatest inspiration is my family. I’m truly the luckiest man alive. I found my soulmate, or she found me, I’ve heard it both ways. Almost love at first sight, our love was refined in the furnace of time, and shaped on the anvil of adversity. Although I’m a fiercely independent person, she is my other half. Still, I did not know the meaning of love until the first moment I saw my son’s face. He is my great motivator. For him I wake up in the morning. For him I work against my nature and try to be my best self. Through the lens of my family, I see the world. With them, I have known pain and despair, and in the same moment known joy, happiness, and contentment. Knowing these things for myself, I recognize them in the world around me, and seeing that life in others, I can capture it on film.
An old adage says, "the eyes are the window to the soul." I don't know if that's true, but I know that play is a reflection of the soul. #PlaytimePortaiture is exactly what it sounds like: a playdate with a photographer. Children rule in the kingdom of play. There, children are allowed to shed cares and wear a crown of natural curiosity. That's the beauty of #PlaytimePortraiture, to see the world on their level, at their accelerated pace. The beauty of imagined worlds and carefree hours shine through the lens.