As far as I can tell, my love for photography started with
this book. Back on Mother’s day I first announced
on Facebook (because it’s not official until it’s on Facebook) that I was
starting my own photography business. In
that moment, I couldn’t help but think of this book. You see, my mom made this book. In my mind, she made it for me. It’s “my” photo album. That’s what I’ve
always called it.
The book begins with pictures of me in the house that we
lived in when I was first born. It’s a
house that I only know because of the photographs in this book. Back then, my dad worked for the Marucci
family (the father of Jack Marucci of maruccisporst.com) as a chef for Shadyside
Restaurant in Uniontown. He was also the
live-in caretaker for the Rockwell family at Five-Gates Farms in Farmington, PA. Based on the
photographs in this book, Five-Gates looked like a pretty awesome place. There are pictures of me and my dad in the
swimming pool and of me on the tennis court.
There are pictures of my mom dragging me away from the cows that lived
on the property. According to my mom, I
was simultaneously fascinated with, and terrified of those cows. So much so that, also according to my mom, I decided that I wanted to be
a cow when I grew up.
Later, there are photographs of me in the home that I grew
up in. There are pictures of me and my
sister with Easter baskets, and pictures of us in our pajamas in front of the
Christmas tree. There are pictures of me
learning to play football and baseball, of firewood sword fights with my dad and
of me learning to ride my bike. There
are also photos of that time that I wouldn’t stop crying until my
mom dressed me up in my dad’s work pants.
As you can probably tell from the condition it’s in, I’ve
spent a lot of time in this book. When I was really young, we had one
television in our house and, when it worked, we got about 5
channels. If the TV wasn’t working, we
had a shortwave radio that I could use to listen to my favorite television
shows. When there was nothing good on
the tv (or the radio) I often found myself flipping through this book, reliving
the memories found on its pages.
Unfortunately, there aren’t many pictures of my mom in this
book. You see, she was the one with the
camera always strapped to her wrist, working hard to capture the memories that
now fill its tattered pages. These days,
it’s my hand in which the camera is always present, and I love it. I love capturing the special moments that
will help my boys relive memories they’ve made together. I love trying different compositions, and
angles, and lighting conditions. To me,
photography is the pursuit of that ever-elusive “perfect picture.” I know that I’ll never succeed in capturing
it, but that’s why I’m obsessed with it.
I didn’t realize it until just recently, but that obsession began with this