Where were we 20 years ago? Did you know that I’ve got a Nikon D3300?
If you knew these facts, wouldn’t you probably know something about my work?
The reason “something” is interesting is that my career is not a linear progression. My first photography assignment was to go to college, got a computer, got a job as a production assistant for a documentary filmmaker who lived in New York City. In 2001, I moved from New York City to the San Francisco Bay Area, went to the California School of Visual Arts, got a job designing posters for another professional film distributor, and graduated in 2005.
My photography career has taken places that nobody expected at the time. It is like the slow-motion of a thousand years. Each year since, I have been on this journey, looking for opportunities to make a contribution and a change. I have been inspired by photographers who have moved from the Midwest (my childhood home) to the Bay Area, who have developed a passion for capturing a living scene that feels important rather than just a few interesting images. Some of those people have been pioneers and pioneers of a kind.
Some might think: “The way people photograph is changing all the time.” But the way people photograph has changed for centuries and decades, and we are just at the beginning moments of the transition into a new era of digital photography. The transition is a gradual process, but what is significant about it is that it has been accelerating in the past ten years.
How many photographers are there?
It’s hard to figure out how many photographers there are in the US right now. It seems to me that if someone wants to make a significant contribution, they go and find another photographer. The difference isn’t in the quantity of photographers per capita: that’s just not the case. The difference seems to be the quality of photography per person: the more experience, education, professionalism, and financial resources a photographer has, the more likely they are to be a contributing photographer. The other interesting statistic about this transition is that photographers now outnumber traditional media and print media journalists. Many of the photographers working today are younger than their predecessors, so I don’t know how many there are today.
Why do you work?
I work because I love to photograph. I love the challenge of working out in the back of an SUV in my garage; the excitement of getting good shots in a lowlight situation, in which there’s nothing else going on, and