My facination for photography dates back to grade school in the 1950's. I was constantly taking snapshots with a favorite Christmas gift - a Brownie Hawkeye - and proceeded to "waste" my allowance money on film and processing at the local drug store. I still have most of those early photos stashed away in a shoebox somewhere.
After graduating from high school in 1957, I enlisted in the US Air Force. Following basic training and tech school, I was sent to a NATO base in France for the next three years. I made fast friends with a guy named Bob who just happened to be the base photographer. Bob taught me all the basics of large format film photography, and since he had access to the base film lab, he taught me darkroom techniques as well. I also lucked out by having the advantage of buying the finest cameras of the day at the base exchange for a song.
After returning to the US in 1960, I had my sights set on enrolling in the Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, California which turned out to be one of the better pipe dreams of my youth. Not only was tuition far out of my league, Santa Barbara was (and is) a very expensive place to live.
And so I went to work for the Federal government which is where I met my wife of 44 years. We have three wonderful children and two beautiful grandchildren.
I have dabbled in photography all these years since (even built my own darkroom at one point). As an avocation I shot a few weddings, did some formal portraits, but was never able to fully explore the creative side of photography which is what I love.
The dawning of the digital age of photography has opened new doors for me, and now that I am finally fully retired, I plan to kick start my old passion at the age of seventy.....we'll see what I can come up with this time around.