My photography journey is 6 years old this year and I just want you to know I wouldn't have achieved any growth without you. You were and are my biggest supporter. The support you have given me goes well beyond photography but for the sake getting too sentimental I'll keep it to photography.
Prior our kids, you supported me, literally. I was on my way out of the US Navy and had nothing (but a messy messy separation). I bought my first DSLR in April 2011, and you were my first photograph.
The photograph was an out of focus mess but you still looked beautiful. Over the next year, I only shot sporadically but that didn't mean you didn't encourage me to shoot. I was just didn't know what I was doing. I tried my hand at landscapes but everything was just blah.
In the fall, we found out that you were pregnant just before I left for Afghanistan. My camera went in to a bag and didn't come out again until I returned. I did take a few photos with my cell phone though.
I returned before Bennett was born and again started shooting on occasion but no genre stuck. That would soon change. Bennett was born on April 16th. I didn't get many photographs from that day but I did get one that still stands out today. I wouldn't have even thought to photograph this moment if it wasn't for you. With all the nurses and doctors around, I guess I was just scared to start taking photos. In your post birth, hormonal haze, you told me to shoot this. This was my defining moment! I knew that my photography journey was supposed to be photographing my children.
Reflecting back on this photograph, I started to think about significant moments and everyday moments of our now 3 children's lives. My photography journey started with this photograph and I wouldn't be me without you. Over the next 5 years, you have continued to support me through ideas, reminders to pick up my camera and feedback. You are my photography partner (even if you don't realize it).
Thank you Kristal for helping me find myself as a photographer and most importantly, a person.
I love you.