I took my first photography class in 1996 as a freshman in college and fell in love with everything about it. During this time, I discovered that through photography, I had the ability to depict the world as I saw it. I was drawn to landscape photography and thrived in the challenge of trying to capture profound images that elicited powerful emotions. Sadly, after college I drifted from that passion and lost it for a number of years.
In 2009, my life became a never ending storm. I had been medically retired from the Army for injuries I sustained during Operation Iraqi Freedom. My wife and I learned that a lump in her right breast was an extremely rare form of cancer and as a result of these things, I found myself swirling like water going down the drain. My life was in chaos. I was not good with expressing emotions or dealing with them, and found myself in need of an outlet. One day, I watched a stranger take a picture in downtown Anchorage, Alaska, and I remembered how meaningful photography was to me in college. I remembered the peace I experienced, as I immersed myself into capturing a photograph, that represented the beauty I saw and the emotion I felt. I wanted to experience that again, and immediately went to Stuart’s Photography Shop in downtown Anchorage and bought myself a good entry level Canon DLSR.
As I discovered just what my new camera could do, I also began to find joy through photography again! I found a strong desire to create, rather than destroy. I found myself full of hope and I knew I belonged behind the camera. Since I originally learned on film, I decided to pursue an education in Digital Photography at the Art Institute of Indianapolis, to learn and understand this "new" type of photography. During my time at the Art Institute, I realized that by combining my old film training with this new type of photography I had created a unique style that set me apart in a very competitive industry. That realization gave me the confidence to elevate my craft and it gave me the unique opportunity to show the world how one wounded warrior sees it.