noun | pho·tog·ra·pher | \fə-‘tä-grə-fər\
: one who practices photography :
I first started practicing photography while 13 years old. Quick math reveals that I’ve been practicing for over 40 years.
noun | her·mit | \’hər-mət\
1 : one that retires from society and lives in solitude :
2 : a spiced molasses cookie :
I’ve been told I’m a hermit, not a spiced molasses cookie, but one that retires from society. I agree that I prefer quite solitude to noisy crowds. I’m a member of HA (Hermits Anonymous) and may even be the founder, I don’t know, I never go to the meetings.
Throughout my life, I’ve sought rejuvenation and peace in the outdoors. Solitary time outdoors always brings renewed energy and hope. I suppose that’s why my preferred photographic subjects are the outdoors and outdoor activities. I got into photography as a kid so I could take pictures of the things I saw while backpacking and share them with the people in my life who didn’t backpack. I tried to create images that communicated how it felt to be where I was when I pressed the shutter. For a long time, this was the admittedly cliché motivation for my photography.
Eventually, I came to realize that the goal of sharing my experience of a place or an event through a photograph could never be met. A two dimensional image, no matter how well crafted, can never share the burning muscles and sore joints in my legs, the sound and goose bump inducing chill of the wind tearing at my hat, or the aroma of lingering snow and high country vegetation mixed and carried by that same wind. All these things and more contribute to my experience atop an almost 12,000′ unnamed peak in the Wyoming wilderness and no photograph can communicate all of this.
With this realization, I re-evaluated my photographic motivation and concluded that, if I couldn’t share a complete experience through an image, I could try to inspire others to have their own experiences. The only way anyone else can ever feel what I felt, is to feel it for themselves. So, look at my photographs, imagine yourself in them, then get out there and create you own experiences! Just don’t do it while I’m there, I may be hiding out from a Hermits Anonymous meeting.