I don't recall ever thinking I wanted to be a photographer when I grew up, though my mother says I told her I wanted to take pictures for National Geographic. I only remember that as very young child I knew that whatever I did, I wanted to make a lot of money doing it so I could buy food for all the hungry children in Africa. My mind tends towards the practical while my heart craves the creative, and the battle between the two has led me on an interesting, albeit slow, journey towards photography.
As a teen I was given the opportunity to travel to Paris on a school trip. We were there for a week. I used more than twenty rolls of film. Looking through those photos now, most of them are terrible. It would be another 15 years before I even began to slowly learn about the principles of composition and how a camera actually works. But the Paris photos and the many rolls taken on three successive trips to Europe in my youth have made me realize one thing: I have always wanted to use my pictures to teach people about the world we live in and the worlds we don't. I am fascinated by history and how different life was in the past and then equally thrilled to come across similarities between now and then. The same goes for the present and the differences in the daily lives of people and the landscapes of the world. When you get down to the root of it, now matter how foreign a custom or a place may seem, the human condition is the same for all of us.
Much of my photography stems from travel, but I've discovered along the way that I also like documenting personal stories of individuals. I am fortunate to have many talented friends of whom I've taken portraits. Capturing a moment with someone or the essence of who they are feels to me a lot like hopping on a train just to see what goes by out the window. Every second is a new discovery. My ultimate goal, I believe, is for my photos to make the viewer see the subject from a new perspective, be it physical or philosophical, and essentially create a little more openness in the mind or in the heart.