Everybody has a reason why they wake up in the morning, why they chose their certain career path, why they live where they live. Some reasons are more personal than others and some reasons are simple. Our paths are made up of choices.. usually that we make for reasons.
My path as a photographer started when I was growing up… with a digital pink camera that my parents got me for a birthday or holiday. “Lets go take pictures!” I would tell my sister and friends from school. We would put on an excessive amount of eyeliner and go stand in the backyard, looking off in the distance like we had just signed a modeling contract at age 14. It was so fun. Looking back, I would have never imagined that my juvenile hobby of pressing one simple button would turn into a passion later on in life.
Flash forward (no pun intended) to about 5 years later. After graduating high school, I learned how to apply the appropriate amount of eyeliner, but I also learned that my dad was diagnosed with stage 4 brain cancer. My family had just gone through my mom’s journey of battling breast cancer and suddenly my life wasn’t so juvenile anymore.
One Sunday after we all got ready for church, I asked if we could take a picture of our family. All dressed up and ready to go pray harder than never before, we went outside to take a couple snapshots.
“Yes. We can take as many pictures as you want” my dad said.
Those words hit me because I knew he recognized the reason behind saying them. Standing there smiling together for the camera, I could not comprehend how much weight some simple iPhone selfies could carry years later.
Months down the road, I scheduled pictures with a local photographer. The last time my family had taken professional pictures I still had front bangs and was collecting quarters from the tooth fairy.. so it was time for an update. I told the photographer about our situation and she was so willing to help us document special memories. Taking pictures together, our family shared laughs, a couple tears, and of course had to tell my dad to stop making goofy poses. Weeks after receiving our photos, my dad texted me while I was in class and thanked me for thinking of the idea. He said the photos meant some much to him and so did we. It was one of my favorite days.
Today, you can find me standing behind the lens.
I created HG Ranch Photography and became a photographer because I have a testimony of how important photographs mean to a family. Sometimes life takes unexpected turns (good or bad) and it is important to document those seasons. Every time I look back at the photographs of me and my dad, I am filled with a reminder of the days, laughs, and memories that I will hold closely to me until I get to meet him again. I want to do the same for others, whether that means being involved in engagements, families, weddings, baby announcements, or documenting lifestyles. Each season is an important one and I love that I get to wake up in the morning and help people celebrate that.
The picture of my dad and me is hanging up next to my bed. I look at it every night and I am unable to explain how grateful I am to have it.
They say a picture can speak a thousand words, my goal is to help people speak theirs.
“We can take as many pictures as you want.”