Happy Anniversary to me.
Yes, I am now embarking on year five of my career. Who would believe it? My anniversary always creeps up on me and how I remember is when I am about to do my taxes (yeah, I am one of those always rushing to the post office on the 15th trying to make the deadline). That’s how artists are.
But some other things have come to my attention as well over the past five years:
- I haven’t been in a serious relationship in the past five years
- I’ve let my body go to pot in the past five years (believe it or not, I used to look a lot like the models I shoot).
- I’ve been financially struggling for the past five years (every dime I have ever made went back into my artistry in forms of studio rent, insurance, lights, cameras, retouching tablets, lenses, portfolios, prints, frames, modifiers, lunch dates, retouching lessons, computers, rams and the list goes on)
- I haven’t had a real vacation in the past five years
And guess what? I don’t regret any of it.
But some amazing things have happened as well:
- My lighting seminar “Light Is Light” is making some noise (I am being asked to take the show on the road)
- My first lighting book is complete and in the works for creating a DVD tutorial
- About to appear on some major television shows.
- Shot more campaigns (in hair, beauty and fashion)
- My name and photography are now recognizable from coast to coast and in Europe
But the most important thing that has occurred in this journey that has struck a nerve is this: my ability to transform lives. I’ve shown models their true beauty even when they didn’t see it. I’ve inspired photographers to better their crafts. I’ve even help launch careers in some of the unlikeliest of people. You never know who you touch with your artistry and when I get an email from some unknown person saying: “Your work has inspired me, one day I want to be like you.” That makes me feel good inside. That I can take a photograph that will move someone so much that they want to be just like me, like I want to be just like Herb Ritts, or Bruce Weber, or Richard Avedon.
All the long, laborious nights of staying up late studying photographs. All the trips to the museums to see how the Renaissance masters painted with light. All the times I would walk the streets of New York and wonder just how God’s light affected my vision. I wouldn’t change it for anything in the world.
Today my passion for this art is as strong as it was since I began this mission.
I want to thank you all of you who believe in me. I vow to never let you down.
I want to thank the models that seek me out.
I want to thank the designers that allow me to bring their creations to life.
I want to thank the art buyers that push to use me.
I want to thank the art directors that marvel at my light.
I want to thank the creative directors that push me out of my comfort zone.
I want to thank my core group, because without you, there is no me.
I want to thank the haters, because you let me know just how well I am doing.
Let’s see what we can do in the next five years.
Remember... Light Is Light
P.S. Happy Birthday Shae Fontaine (http://www.shaefontaine.com/)