Over the weekend I made my 500th blog post without realizing I’d reached that milestone until I logged in to make #501. It took a little more than five years to do and makes me think about all that has changed over the years as well as what has stayed the same.
It seems appropriate and at least a little ironic that the images I had planned to blog today actually do a good job of depicting just that.
While photography is in my blood and I can’t imagine making a career out of anything else this wasn’t always the case. Inspired by an amazing fifth grade teacher (whom I went back and visited every year until she retired when I was in my 20s) I spent most of my youth doing everything I could to prepare myself for a career in elementary education. I taught, I tutored, worked a day cares and day camps and if we went back in time you never could have convinced me I’d end up working as a photographer and running my own small business instead.
Through websites like Facebook I’ve reconnected to people I knew back then and nobody has ever seemed the slightest bit surprised that I ended up making a career based largely on having a camera in my hand and documenting the world around me. It is, afterall, what I did a lot of back then even if it was just for fun. The sheer volume of swim team pictures I took in high school quite possibly borders on insane. It doesn’t include the piles of prints and negative envelopes of pictures taken of other elements of high school. More than a decade later there are still a few that wow me and make me wonder what I could do with fancy things like autofocus and really high ISO. 🙂
When I decided I wanted to start photographing people underwater it seemed like the most natural place to be. After spending years swimming on swim teams, teaching others to swim, working with children in so many different capacities, and falling in love with scuba diving it’s hard to believe it took me so long to see this is what I was meant to do when I “grew up.” But now that I have I look back a little more fondly at the vast piles of pictures and think maybe they weren’t insane at all – just practice for future adventures.
If I had to pick a single action shot of someone on my high school swim team actually swimming in a race as a favorite it would ironically be of the same swimmer I photographed in December at Magic Island in Honolulu.
First a quick scan of that beloved photograph from sometime in the late 90s (funny how the scanner picks up scratch details I never noticed on the print):
And a gallery of favorites from the Immersed session at Magic Island:
Doesn’t she just look amazing and natural underwater?