Having always been a "shutterbug", the passion really kicked in when I got my first 300mm zoom lens in 2000. I rewarded myself with a new Nikon camera and sigma lens after completing an especially challenging mural at our county library.
I started visiting the Cincinnati Zoo weekly and built a portfolio of animal shots. I was eventually able to place some framed prints and greeting cards for sale in the zoo's gift shop and have had the honor of having many of my images published in their "Wildlife Explorer" magazine as well as having images used in their maps, brochures, and on the website. My connection with the buyer also presented me with the opportunity to paint a mural in the kid's gift shop at the zoo. (talk about challenging - that one was done entirely in a cherry picker!) Of course while I was painting, I took long breaks to photograph the animals!
Unfortunately, just as my greeting cards were really starting to sell, there was a change in buyers and they no longer chose to carry photos. I now have cards in a few bookstores and at the Berea Artisan Center.
I shoot film and have been very resistant to the "digital age" of photography. I had even developed quite a negative attitude about manipulated or enhanced images, preferring to be a "purist". However, while reading one of Jim Zuckerman's excellent books this past Jan., he addressed that concept and actually said "don't be ridiculous!"-
which really struck me!
Although I'm still shooting film, I did jump on board here at Better Photo, and taught myself to scan and upload photos. I realized immediately that I needed to upgrade my scanner and get photoshop and am now learning new things each day. I have quickly gotten over my negativity about enhancing photos! I love the BP format and all of the interaction with other photographers and plan to continue submitting images daily while I continue to learn!
On a personal note- I have been married to the most wonderful man for 25 years! He is a source of inspiration and has always supported my artistic endeavors. We have been greatly blessed with 2 terrific sons who are both in college now, and we live in the beautiful state of KY. I thank GOD for my eyesight and my abilities as well as the beauty and diversity of his creations and hope that my photos may be an inspiration to others.
Thanks for visiting!
update - I got my first macro lens (60mm Nikor micro lens) in May of this year ('05) and haven't been able to put it down! I'm thoroughly enjoying this whole new experience in photography! Thanks to all of you fellow BP members for your inspiration and support!