Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Urban Nights

Urban nights is one of the things I miss about Dayton...a night of visual and performing art when everyone comes out of a long winter hibernation to celebrate the beginning of Spring weather - even if it's short lived :)
Here's a glimpse of what turned out to be a beautiful evening of creative displays, seeing old friends, and enjoying a night on the town.

Dayton - East side and West side

Saturday, May 15, 2010

A military life - what that means to a photographer

Days like today are the days I wish for every day. To look behind me and see what I've accomplished. To look ahead and look forward to what I have yet to do. To visit and talk with friends who remind me of why I love this life. Why I love my life. Why, despite the myriad challenges of uprooting a business every three or so years to start over in brand new, uncharted territory, this is what I am meant to do. I am a photographer because I love it. Because it is what drives me. Because I cannot imagine what a day looks like when I don't see it at least for one moment through the lens. It's a love affair.

But the reality is that I am also a military spouse. And everything that goes along with that means that I cannot look every day in the eye and feel as good as I do today. Some days I am exhausted by starting over and over and over. Of living and trying to thrive in new markets and new places. But then, days like today, I am reminded that this life that I live, this ever changing, never stationary life that I live, has absolutely contributed to who I am, to the photographer I have become, to the photographer I will still become. This life has allowed me to be a national photographer in a very real sense of the word. I am not attached to "anywhere". I am willing and able to go, to relocate, to find a brick wall or a patch of grass in the shade or an open road in any city or state in this country or beyond. I can fly free and travel far, and always have a home to come back to no matter where that home was, or where that home is right now.

I have learned so much in just the few years that I have been doing this - I know that the connections I make, the friendships I establish, and the relationships I form are long reaching and that there are tighter bonds that connect us than simply those of geography. I've learned that the military is my family, my home. Yes, they will take care of me and welcome me wherever I land. But it's up to me to make the best of it as I go. And that means fully embracing the travel and the change and the course I am on. Challenges and all.

What sparked this note? Sometimes I get questions (or question myself) about how I manage to run a small business while moving around the country so much. Depending on the day, the answer can be tinged with regret or tinted with sadness or toned with utter joy. A recent conversation with a friend helped me to see, though, that there's no room for regret in a life lived fully. And deep down, that nothing holds me back but myself. Not being tethered to one location can be a challenge, but it can also be the thing that makes me. And yes, some day when I do settle in a place of my choosing, I have big plans...visions of a studio, maybe an abandoned warehouse all to myself, maybe a gallery. But for now, for the foreseeable future, and most definitely even after I settle, I will be anywhere. Everywhere. I will be back in DaytonColumbiaGoldsboroRaleighDCPennsylvania where my friends and family and clients value the work that I do and support me in it. I will be in new places, like Valdosta, establishing new friendships and finding new people to add to my list of friends who become clients, clients who become friends, or friends who become chosen family. I will be wherever I need to be to keep living my dream. And I love it. Really, what more could I ask for? Today is a good day.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Retail Therapy

Sometimes a girl just has to have new shoes. 'Nuff said.