The world is my image. I am a camera. My memory tells me that from an early age, even before I was interested in pursuing photography as a hobby, that I was framing and composing my particular view of the world.
Currently my main camera is a Canon EOS-R acquired at Christmastime in 2020. I have multiple lenses, including telephoto and wide angle. I usually have my camera set up for Auto Exposure Bracketing and shoot three exposures in RAW for HDR (high dynamic range) processing, using Photomatix Pro and Photoshop CC software to create one of my images.
It takes at least 15 minutes and can take hours to create my images. I try to get out and shoot on weekends when the weather is good and have been taking "Photo Expeditions" around Southern California since 2004. Before I retired in November 2022, I would spend at least a couple of hours each morning before going in to work on photo processing and posting to my social media sites, Facebook and Flickr.
Now during retirement I'm spending a lot of time traveling and taking pictures. I sell my prints and merch here on my personal website.
MY HISTORY AS A PHOTOGRAPHER
Growing up I would love to go through the family albums. Mother and Father grew up during the great depression in the 1930s and their early adult years were during World War II. Mom had a "brownie" camera during the 40s and she had lots of shots of her hometown, her travels, and even what passed then for "selfies" and shots of her and her friends hanging out and having fun.
Father was a professional photographer for a time, and he similarly had lots of photos in albums, including experimental photos he took of flickering shots of baseball games on early television screens and photos of the cat he and my mom had as a pet, which was an early "pitchman" for cat food advertisements, sort of like "Morris the Cat" when I was growing up.
I was born in 1953. Sister and Brother followed soon after, and Mother took lots of "snapshots" of our family growing up.
My own introduction to photography was as editor of our high school newspaper. I have memories of going through a coffee table book of Photojournalism. In school we used a Polaroid camera with a bladder, if memory serves, and we had to smear gunk on the exposed photo. I shot photos around campus, sometimes trying to get an interesting angle.
My first camera was a Kodak Instamatic given to me about the time I graduated from high school. I used it to take photos when I went on vacation after high school and in college. In those days, I really didn't practice the 'art' of photography. But one shot stands out for me, the one above of the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco, taken on a trip up to Vancouver for Expo 74. I liked the look of the photo. It was taken with my second camera, also a Kodak, which took larger photos. In those days of course all the photos were taken on a roll of film, which had to be developed before one could see how the photos came out.
My career came first when I was in my twenties, but I did get a 35mm camera during that time and soured on it quickly. First, the camera was supposedly "free" and was part of a telephone scam, where the company sold a credit card to rack up the prodigious development fees. By the time I figured out the scam, I bailed out of the program, cancelled the card, and tossed the camera in a drawer. I thought there was too much to try to learn in order to take pictures anyway. I didn't know an "f-stop" from the "f-word" I used in frustration when trying to focus the dang thing.
I wouldn't begin photographing again in earnest until after I began videotaping in the mid 1980s. Videotape morphed into digital videotape by the turn of the century, and my second digital videotape camera had the ability to take 1 megapixel still photos.
From those beginnings, while I was in my forties, I started going on "Photo Expeditions", taking both video and stills on specific trips to specific places in the area around Southern California where I live.
The digital still feature gave way to the Cybershot in 2007, an Olympus with an 8 megapixel sensor a few years later. I upgraded to a DSLR in early 2015, the Canon Rebel t5i, and used it until September of 2016 when an errant wave splashed me and ruined the camera. I upgraded next to the Canon EOS80D. During the pandemic I upgraded again to an EOS-R. I've purchased myriad photo processing programs. My exposure with Photoshop began with Photoshop Elements 13 and now I use Photoshop 2024. My HDR program is Photomatix Pro 6. Plug ins for Photoshop include Topaz AI products, Nik's Color Efex and Silver Efex Pro and Aurora HDR.
I'm strictly an amateur, and am "still" (and forever really) learning.