You might get that reference from the title, you might not, but I’ve officially been at this for a year! I got my camera (originally a Canon RP before switching to my Sony Alpha A7 III) a year ago today…and boy, have I fallen in love with photography!

I thought it might be good to look back at some of the beginning, some of my first shoots, and some of my favorites, and try to remember that I’ve made progress along the way even if I am feeling a bit stalled at the moment! I’ll take you through each one, if you’re interested to follow along. Some of these are old and some new!

1. This was an iPhone photo I captured in late May of 2020 on Lake Grapevine - this, with a few others in the area at sunset were the catalyst to me really wanting to pick up a camera and see if I could do this.

2. I couldn’t find the first shot from that camera, but this is the 8th one - taken the next morning from the roof of the parking garage overlooking Fort Worth in the morning - past sunrise, so it was bright already, but I still love how it came out just because it’s different.

3. This is one of my absolute favorites - captured less than a week after I got that camera in June 2020, at Lakeside in Flower Mound, it captures The Tower at Lakeside in a beautiful sunset.

4. This one - this shot, taken in late August 2020, is like the first, but a true realization of what I was going for. This is one of my favorite sunsets of all time, and this is the one that landed me my first cover (even if it is a mainly online only magazine, I’ll take it!)

5. This is Jon and Lex, from my first ever photo shoot on October 4, 2020! I didn’t realize they had recently gotten engaged at first since this was a family shoot, but when we broke the family into smaller group shots, I absolutely LOVED capturing moments like these with them! This is why I really can’t wait to get into engagement/wedding photography and I’m trying so hard to.

6. This is a shot from my shoot with the Villarreal family, my second ever shoot in March of 2021. I loved this moment with Gabriella and her parents!

7. This is a headshot of Ashlee Inman (IG @ashleenman), who I got to do my first ever studio shoot with in April 2021! This was definitely a new challenge and I had to learn a lot in a short time to get some good shots here, but my habit of always moving and always shooting to get unique shots has paid off a lot.

8. A black and white shot from my first ever business/promo shoot with Splinters Axes and Ales in April 2021! I loved doing these promo type shots because it stretched my creativity and actually got my mind thinking about wedding shot planning too.

9. This is a shot of Myles from early May 2021 after we had two or three weather delays for this shoot! I love love love golden hour, and this shot just shows why. I didn’t think we were going to get lucky with the tall trees, but at one point, I saw the sun peeking out where Emily was standing and told her “You, move” and told Myles, “You, over there”, and the rest is history 😂 I’m never very commanding in my sessions, but I wasn’t going to pass up a chance at golden light, and I am sure glad I didn’t!

10. And last but not least, this shot is one of my absolute favorites of my beautiful wife Emily! I shot this at Glen Rose in late April 2021 using the Lomography Petzval 85mm lens - a completely manual lens (including aperture and focus both), which made for quite the challenge, but it was worth it! The bokeh it produces is amazing and creates movement, and can even be changed with the shape of the metal inserts you use to change the aperture!

Thank you for coming with me on this journey (and thank you to those I have pelted with questions over the past year!), and I really hope you invite some friends to come along too so this adventure can survive and thrive!

And a huge thank you to my wife Emily, for your support over this last crazy year, from this photography journey to everything else! I love you!

I also have to give a huge shoutout to Erica Garza, Jazmine Villarreal, and Nancy Cook for believing in me and being my first clients - that means the world to me. And a shoutout to Jonette at Splinters Axes and Ales for my first business/promotional shoot (and second)!

Feel free to share my Facebook/Instagram pages, website, info, or just send over a favorite post of yours! I like to think I’ve improved a lot over the last year, and I can’t wait to schedule some more sessions, capture more events, work with some more businesses, and maybe, like I said, break into doing some weddings and even more things. Here’s to year two!

To photograph is to hold one’s breath, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.”

Henri Cartier-Bresson

This bonus shot is what made me think of that quote from Henri Cartier-Bresson - this was a capture of a type that I'd never done before, high speed, motion with the camera while doing the capture, etc. Completely new to me that day - and I felt extremely happy to come away with at least one shot like this that I love!

I do have some others, but this one definitely stood out to me. Thanks again to Fort Worth Camera for the telephoto rental for this one for the Fort Worth Foto Fest!