It all started when I was very young - cliche, I know...
I have memories of my father going on trips to tropical destinations in pursuit of photography and I couldn't understand why I wasn't able to tag along. When I was a little older, I remember playing with his (at that time, stored away) equipment, wondering what each thing was. Why did he have little colored glass disks? Why was one half red and half blue? For some reason, I never asked.
In elementary school, I had an incredible opportunity to take a full-featured photography class where I learned how to handle a manual 35mm camera and got a little taste of composition, lighting, and post processing. We learned the history of cameras, built our own (working!) cameras out of cardboard boxes, spooled our exposed film by hand in changing bags and developed it in the darkroom. We completed the whole process over the course of several months and at the end, I had a perfectly exposed and composed 8x10 image of.... a police cruiser. (Hey, take what you can get! I didn't have a whole lot of available subjects). I think I might still have it kicking around somewhere.
My relationship with photography was sporadic for the rest of my formative years - I would get a camera and some film when I could and snap away, and every now and then a great shot would come through (law of large numbers). I won a photography contest in middle school for a completely lucky shot of a ball thrown up in the air that perfectly eclipsed the sun. I couldn't have done it again if I tried. As a teenager, I had loads of little drug store pouches in my bedroom filled with blurry and partially exposed images. I was limited mostly by the cost of the film and development.
I never lost sight of it, however - and my boyfriend (now husband) bought me a nice chunky point and shoot with manual exposure options more than 10 years ago now. It was a Christmas gift - and he proposed the same year. I think I was being buttered up, but whatever - I wasn't complaining! (I suppose maybe it wasn't just the camera, but don't tell him).
That same camera accompanied us on our honeymoon to Aruba - where it proceeded to save our lives. I'm not kidding, the camera is a full-fledged hero. See, Aruba has these caves you can explore. One of them is aptly called the "Tunnel of Love" due to its heart-shaped opening. We were on our honeymoon- need I say more? We got there in the afternoon and were handed two very large flashlights with shoulder straps and told to watch our heads because the ceiling could be low. By the time we were 1/4 of the way through the cave, however; both flashlights were fading. No amount of shaking them was making the light come back on and eventually, we were lost in a pitch black cave in a foreign country. Our flip phones weren't even with us because at that time, they didn't work in Aruba. Luckily, we had the camera with fresh batteries. I took pictures inside the cave, using the flash to see glimpses of the walls and the LCD monitor on the back of the camera to guide us under low ceilings. We finally found our way out after what felt like an eternity and when we emerged, it was dark out and the "guides" who supplied our flashlights were gone.
To my benefit- the last few years have seen an explosion in digital photography, and pro-sumer level IL-DSLR cameras came down in price and I was able to get my first "real" camera just a few short years ago. The learning curve was a bit steep but I loved it and people eventually started to notice. The awesome part was I could now take as many terrible pictures as I wanted and I wasn't "wasting" film- what a novelty!
As my skills progressed, I soon realized that in order to get to the next level, I had to upgrade my equipment. I'm now shooting with a Nikon D750 and will never look back!
As I stated, I am now married and I have 2 beautiful children who, currently, are my ever-willing subjects when I'm behind the camera. We'll see how long that lasts!
I like to include natural elements in my photography and I will utilize natural light over artificial conditions whenever possible for the most organic result. I enjoy digging in and I'm not afraid to get dirty in order to obtain unique perspectives in my work. For me, the name Barefoot Blooms captures these sentiments. *Plus, I found that if I don't wear shoes while I'm gardening, I don't track dirt into the house :).
Thank you for taking a peek at this page and I hope that I can be a part of helping you capture the moments you want to remember.