I started exploring photography about four years ago. Growing up, I never thought of myself as a creative type, but my sister’s boyfriend purchased a Nikon D40 and I don’t quite remember why, but I asked to borrow it for a week.
Like most things, I like to know or understand how something works. “Playing” with that SLR really unlocked a new world for me. This new gadget was full of different options, and unlike traditional cameras (I never took any classes), I didn’t have to wait to develop the images. Instead, I was painting with light!
Soon thereafter, I researched and settled on purchasing my first SLR, a Pentax K2000. I sometimes regret not opting for a Nikon or Canon system, but that’s mostly a symptom of the ‘grass always being greener’ on the other side. I chose Pentax because it was within my budget, and for starting out, I loved the idea that their current K-mount (how the lens attaches to the camera body) is essentially compatible with just about every single lens/body they’ve made going back to the 70′s. The allure of being able to try out different (albeit, maybe not the best when compared to the current generation’s) lenses for less than $100 sealed the deal.
Starting in 2009, I started living a very offline lifestyle and decided to use photography as a catalyst to get over my tendencies to stay in all the time, and simply get out.
I registered shotbywill.com and used that as client/model portfolio site for shoots, and used cargocollective as a general portfolio. ShotByWill might be resurrected down the road, but the cargocollective site contains a small sample of my early work and shoots.
In May of 2011, my dear cat (technically, my ex-girlfriend’s) went missing from my mom’s place with signs of foul play. That weekend, I decided to try and get my mind off my missing cat and attended a group shoot. Towards the end of the day, I received a call from my sister informing me that she had found the body. Turned out that she was killed by a family dog that my sister had just brought to the family a few months prior. I was devastated and stopped shooting.
Later that year, I suffered a massive local server crash that resulted in the loss of most of my original files.
I’ve mostly moved on from those two losses, but whenever I go back to view the cargo site, I feel like I’m viewing the work of a close friend that I once knew rather than my own. That’s a reflection of just how much has changed.
Early this year, I started to shoot again with my SLR, but it’s been relegated to a tool I use when it’s convenient. The focus has changed to living and enjoying the experiences in life rather than catching a still of it. That said, I’ve started to put more thought into shooting small projects again.
In the meantime, check out the old portfolio and let me know what you think. Stay tuned for some unpublished images as well!