Wednesday, March 18, 2009

And the Journey squinting

If you don't write it down you won't do it.

I was told this about reaching my goals. To make them real, to actually go after them you have to write it down. You see, I am a dreamer, always have been. I go from wild idea to wild idea, thinking how cool, but never following through. So why am I doing this and what is the purpose of my blog (kind of an ugly word, need to come up with something else to call this).

I want to help humanity. I wanted to do this in several ways, and sometimes I did it without listening to myself. I also wanted to leave my mark on the world; something I was good at doing. I have gone from accountant, to psychologist, to lawyer, to marriage counselor to MIT electronic engineer/computer scientist (the last one is a pipe dream, but as foreign as it seems to be it still fascinates, hopefully my son will be going there to change the world as well:-), and never finishing the education training. I was, after being a lost boy for many years, well on my way to finally getting my psychology degree. All As in the last full semester, and As to begin my last. I had gotten my GE done (up to that point the only psych class I had was 101, I wanted to focus on it after the blah blah courses had gone) at a community college, Cypress, transferred with enough credits to get my AA (I didn't because I thought without any doubt I would get my BA) and made it to a four year university. I mapped it out to get the degree while having balance with the wife and child; it was tight and tough but we were getting it done.....then the proverbial rug was pulled under me and I fell flat on my face.

The economic crunch had hit the place I worked for. I was let go in Feb due to closing down stores. This snowballed into a total collapse of goals. To get unemployment insurance I had to be fully available. This meant that if I stayed at school I would not receive compensation. I have a wife to look after as well as a baby boy. Schooling and psychology, as painful as it was, had to stop. I felt horrible. I was going to a four year school, in my early to mid thirties, which is hard to do considering I am about 10 to 14 years older then most of the student body. No problem, it'll be only temporary, I'll get a job lined up right away and get back in the school game hopefully by summer.

Right away turned into one month, then two then in a world where online applications are the norm and trying to make any type of impression is Herculean at best. During this time I got upset at the thought of being at someone's raised or lowered thumb. Will I get to stay or will Caesar throw me to the lions. Funny thing though, during this time I started taking pictures, lots of pictures.

I had gotten a Canon Rebel, back in 2004 with a single lens that came with it. In actuality it was a glorified point and shoot. I shot every now and then, capturing work outings and the such, but not much more. Then with my wife and son around I had a reason to break it out. Taking pictures was a great release, it felt like a duty a job, I loved squinting, looking through the viewfinder to find on the other side memories, art, long lasting images that when looked upon 1o, 20, 50 years from now will bring a smile as well as some tears. Then it hit me.

I love weddings, always have. I am a romantic when it comes to this. I love the pageantry, the tenderness, the bringing together two people in a ceremonial bond that will fuse them into one. I love the venues, church, outside, beach. I loved all the fun zany things, the bouquet and garter toss, money dance, cutting of the cake. The touching moments, dad walking his little girl down the aisle, his first dance with her, and it hitting him, his little girl will now be a Mrs. And then BAM, the light went off.

Wedding Photographer. To help humanity by capturing these moments in an artistic, long lasting, expressive manner. To be there when the joys are at their peak. To capture raw human love and devotion just by squinting and looking thru the glass.

Wedding photography is a business. All the things I had thought about doing lend themselves to it, accounting and law for the contract, daily business side, psychology and marriage counselor for the bride groom and family. Even my interest in technology to keep up with the ever changing world of photography and post production. It rolled up into one glorious taco salad. I get to be artistic beef, geeky cheese, creative tomatoes, and helpful lettuce all in the shell of a wedding photographer...

But wait there's more. My experience shooting had at that point been relegated to the cute little pictures on my dial, the one of the ladies head, the running man, the flower. I had to brave the world of clicking that dial over to the forbiden and scary zones of Av, Tv, and the monstrous M!!!

Not only this but what the hell does it take to be a professional wedding photographer? What is involved, what do I need to know? How will I get there? How will I compete with established people, will I need a Fine Art degree.

Well this is my journey. My goal is to be a full fledged wedding photographer in four to five years. I am going to share with those who want to take a moment out of there time and tell you. What books I read, strategies I learned, techniques, business aspects. The challenges I have to overcome, the breakthroughs I experience. You will read the chapters from the beginning to My first booking, and so on. I am going to be a detective racing to catch up, hopping in the cab and yelling Follow That Photo. Find him and pin him down until all the secrets are revealed. I hope it is interesting and transcedental. It will be an amazing journey, all from looking into a little glass piece and squinting.

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