How did you get into photography? Was it difficult?
I started taking pictures after traveling to a dear friend's wedding in Puerto Rico. Due to the non-prevalence of smartphones at the time I could only take pictures with a Kodak disposable. Angry at myself for not capturing my best memories in some tangible way I immediately bought a Nikon point-and-shoot.
From there I basically developed my own skills by researching in depth what kind of image I wanted as a final product. When the time came I upgraded my gear as necessary. I found none of this process difficult as I genuinely enjoy what I do.
DO YOU HAVE A DEGREE IN PHOTOGRAPHY OR HAVE YOU TAKEN ANY SPECIAL COURSES?
The only degree I currently possess is one from Cornell University and I assure that it is in no way related to the field of photography. It does help me in better understanding my subjects/collaborators so we can easily take those non-posed natural photos plastered all over this site. I have taken no specialized courses either to learn photography or editing.
The internet today is truly a wonderful thing. In addition with the advent of digital photography in the last two decades you can learn an insane amount of information if you put your mind to it and absorb anything you can find.
Furthermore when you spend a large amount on gear (because photography is seldom cheap) you tend to learn everything you can about that so you get the best bang for your buck.
WHAT GEAR DO YOU USE?
I'm currently a big fan of Sony and their mirrorless cameras. Their compact sizes allows me to sneak into places where larger cameras are typically verboten. Sony and its sensors have come a long way in recent years and easily rival those by Canon and Nikon. That said I can use any of the three camera types without difficulty.
In addition to the camera bodies I possess a number of accessories including flashes, filters, tripods, diffusers, and softboxes. Depending on a shoot I may rent additional gear as necessary but being a former Boy Scout of America I try to make due with what I have at hand.
HOW QUICKLY DO YOU WORK?
The length of time on a project depends on several factors. Of key concern are the number of expected shots and amount of post production editing. In the day and age of instant smartphone gratification we often forget that in the course of a shoot I can take several hundred shots of which I must review and edit. Some can be easy and instantly processed whilst others may take several weeks depending on my workload. Regardless I'm always proud of the final product.
Will you travel to take pictures?
Gladly! Travel benefits everyone and I personally not only get to take pictures of exotic subjects but also get to learn more about different people, cultures, and landscapes. Through travel my photography develops on an exponential scale.