It was May 1998 and I had just graduated from George Fox University in Newberg, OR with a degree in Health and Physical Education. For my graduation gift I told my parents that I really wanted a camera for a six week European trip that I was taking with some friends.
Well, I got the camera, traveled to Europe, visiting over 17 countries. I shot countless rolls of film (yes, film). Before my trip I had taken the time to read my camera manual and learn all the basics on how SLR camera’s work. After my trip I developed the dozen or so rolls of film I shot and when I got my pictures back I was amazed at some of them!
And then a light bulb went off in my head! I could do this as a profession! I was passionate about it. It was fun. I could make money. What better job could you possibly have? And so my journey to become a photographer began in 1999… I read some books, took a couple classes, met with other local professional photographers, read my camera manual over and over, and experimented and practiced on friends and family. With each day I grew better and better.
And then I got my first “real” photo shoot. It was a small wedding in Roseburg, OR. I remember vividly sitting in the car and thinking “what am I doing? I’m going to ruin someone’s wedding pictures!”. But that didn’t happen. They were great! And so by word of mouth, my photography business began to grow. With each wedding I was learning how to anticipate moments, capture expressions, and blend with my surroundings. I launched my website and began advertising in 2003 and since then I have shot about 300 weddings, countless senior portraits, and many other photo events. I have traveled from Hawaii to Pennsylvania, and all across the Pacific Northwest. Most of the weddings I shoot are near these Oregon cities: Portland, Salem, Eugene, Bend, Medford, Cannon Beach, Hood River…but of course traveling anywhere is always fun!
I am the husband to my beautiful wife Kathleen and the dad to our four wonderful children. They, more than anything else are what I love the most. I take lots of pictures of them, play at the park, go on bike rides, serve at church, geocache, go backpacking, and love woodworking. I have even built a treehouse (zipline included) for them which you can see in one of the photos below. As I mentioned above, I have a master’s degree in Health & Physical Education and am just now starting my 15th year teaching PE and Health, presently in Corvallis. 15 years…wow! How time flies. Teaching, as with photography, are both truly fun and I feel like I’ve never “worked” a day in my life. I am so blessed to love what I do. I also love soccer and have played my whole life. I play whenever I get a chance; in fact I played for 4 years at Hidden Valley High School in Grants Pass, OR, in which time, during my senior year my team won the State Title! I went on and played 4 more years at George Fox University.