_DSC3937-EditHi, I’m Julia — no shock there, I suppose! I’ve always had a bit of artist in me — I began playing violin when I was 4, piano when I was 8, and around that time began drawing. And drawing. And drawing. It started as horses. Always horses! Then I moved to dogs. And snakes. And crocodiles. And I tried people, but failed horribly at that so I went back to animals. Then around 9th grade I received a little $10 35-mm camera, with no zoom. I took pictures of everything! In fact, once, I caught a wild box turtle and kept him as a pet for a weekend. I felt bad, so I let him go, but not after taking an entire roll of film of him. Yeah, my dad wasn’t happy.

Fast forward to later high school when I start, uh, borrowing my dad’s camera to take pictures of flowers and nature, and then – surprise! horses. As a going-to-college present my dad bought me my own little cheap point-and-shoot, and it was surely used. For Christmas I received a nicer point-and-shoot; one with manual controls! I began shooting horses, horse shows, more dogs (naturally), more nature – landscapes, macro, wildlife, you name it. One day while shooting a hunter-jumper show I decided I wanted to get a DSLR, so I started saving. For two years. Enter my first DSLR. I continued shooting anything I could. I took classes. Workshops. Read books, magazines, tutorials. I apprenticed with internationally known award-winning photographer for a summer.

May 2012. I remember it so clearly. I got home from a visit to my parents’ house to find my apartment had been broken into. My years of accumulated camera gear: gone. Whoever it was kindly left me the camera backpack – empty (save for a few now useless cables). At that point I was ready to hang up my photography hat; I’d had a good run. Was it really worth it to save the money back up again?

Turned out, it was. In that time, I had a few people ask about shoots, but the sealer came when my best friend asked if it would be possible to continue to do the annual Christmas portraits photo shoot I’d done in the past as a fundraiser for the county animal shelter, as plenty of people had inquired. Once again, I borrowed my dad’s Canon DSLR and did the day-long fundraiser shoot. It was also a fundraiser for me, because it earned me enough money to buy my current D300 with my first two lenses. I’m so glad I did, because my love of photography has exploded since I’ve been back.


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