Life has a special way of turning on me, with surprises (good and bad). If you had asked me five years ago where I thought I would be today, boy, I honestly couldn't fathom ANY of the things I have been through. Not that my life is awful, far from it, but there were just SO MANY surprises, growth, tears and joy. Being a military spouse alone has its own sets of hurdles. By far, my biggest one was employment.
It is a known fact that employment is one of the hardest parts of being a military spouse, the unemployment rate for us is 26%, that is more than 3 TIMES ABOVE the national average, but not only that, the ones who do get employment earn 38% LESS than civilian counterparts. No I am not being a negative Nancy. Truth is, I can relate to that 110%, I have been there and it stinks.
After having a few weird or ridiculously low paying jobs in our current town, I decided to use one of the scholarships available to me and get into photography again, it has ALWAYS been a passion, I remember playing model with my cousins, my dad had this old broken camera but we could still snap, focus and "rewind" the film we didn't have, it was so much fun!
"We must let go of the life we have planned so as to accept the one that is waiting for us" - Joseph Campbell
So I did, in 2014 I took leave of absence from my soul-killing retail job and started to dive in Photography again, from the basics. A few deployments and moves in between, I graduated early 2016 and found myself back in Valdosta post-deployment and asking myself if I should continue with my never ending job search. After a heart-to-heart with Kyle, he opened my eyes to the fact that after every job, every move, every new hobby fizzled, photography was always a constant thing in my life.
To be honest, I thought working for someone else or photographing for a living would steal the joy of creative photography, and man, I WAS SO WRONG! So last year, on a whim, I decided to "give it a go" and try photographing professionally. I started by spending some money on an absolutely amazing posing course by an awesome wedding photographer (Katelyn James). From there, things started slow and I had no clue where to really start, but one by one I got friends, family and strangers to trust me.
I have been photographing for less than a year and I am so happy to announce I have been featured on my school's success story blog <3 This may seem insignificant and unimportant, especially nowadays where we are bombarded with great-looking images, blog posts and ads all the time, but for me, it is a little validation. It is so incredibly nice to be recognized for so much hard work and personal growth. I hope to continue to grow and create beautiful images that reflect people's genuine emotions!
I am SO THANKFUL for every single one of my clients, friends, family and supporters, THANK YOU for believing on me when when I didn't! You can read the full article HERE.