I was born in Muncie, Indiana and grew up in the rural area of eastern Delaware county. In many ways, creativity and art played a role in my childhood; I always enjoyed art classes in elementary school and I enjoyed literature and writing classes high school. My introduction to photography came in the 9th grade when I took a photography class. We developed our own black and white film and made small black and white prints. This experience was compelling for me; the developing and printing processes were spellbinding.
Even as a child, I was captivated by eastern thought and Asian cultures. Though very different from the midwestern society in which I grew up, the significance of Asian culture and philosophy - both religious and secular - were compelling. Throughout my life, I have in one way or another explored eastern thought; a photographic inquiry into Asian culture and philosophy was a natural continuation of that process of discovery.
Exploration of other cultures, people and religious traditions are the things that inspire my work. I have found that many religious traditions share common threads in spite of the differences between the cultures in which they exist. Through learning about the common ground that different religious traditions and cultures share, a better understanding of other people, traditions and nations becomes possible.
As a self taught photographer, my earliest attempts were based on the Group f/64 approach to photography, on which Edward Weston and Ansel Adams left their indelible mark. Through the years, my photographic interests grew to include a more broad scope of subject matter and technique than the f/64 school of thought was centered on. This evolution of my photographic curiosity resulted in a major shift in my photography from an illustrative approach to a storytelling approach. I began to explore the possibilities of handheld photography as well as the strengths offered by utilizing shallow depth of field. I found existing light photography to be infinitely preferable to other lighting alternatives. I learned that long exposure photography offers the possibility of capturing subject movement in a scene while maintaining a strong sense of place. Much of this exploration of technique was based on my own experimentation and investigation. The photographers who have most influenced me most are Constantine Manos, Steve McCurry, Peter Turnley and Henri Cartier-Bresson.
My mission is to explore unfamiliar cultures, people and religious traditions by creating insightful storytelling images with depth that will reveal the common traits we share with others, regardless of nationality, religious or cultural differences.
I am a member of Bloomington Photography Club and American Society of Media Photographers.
My interests outside of photography include travel, book collecting, reading, fly fishing and canoeing.