I remember reading National Geographic Magazine when I was growing up. Even at the tender age of six, I distinctly remember being amazed by the photography and the range of work that was published in the magazine. I can remember thinking that one day I wanted to travel the world with my camera, documenting the lives of people who seemed so very different from myself.
Eventually, I grew up, got a real camera, and started my photography business. I did not get to travel the world (yet) and the whole business aspect was very disenchanting. So, I gave up. I figured that photography really wasn’t my calling. I put down my camera in December of 2009 and thought that was the end of it.
I always seemed to be in Washington, D.C. during the time when the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History would be showcasing the National Geographic Annual Photography Contest Winners. I would always be drawn into the exhibit and I would examine each photo for the longest time, fascinated by the colors, composition, and subject matter. I would leave with a feeling of amazement and wonder, but I would feel this emptiness that I could not explain.
In April 2011, my uncle died. That was the turning point in my photography. I had not picked up my camera in any real way since 2009 but I felt this incredible pull, something I could not deny any longer. I grabbed my camera and through the lens, I documented my emotions. Photography has always been my outlet. When I hold the camera in my hands, I do not feel the cold winter wind nor the heat and humidity of a hot Saint Louis summer, I only feel the emotions of the moment around me.
When I heard National Geographic was accepting entries for the 2011 contest, I decided it was time. Of course, now I can’t decide what photo to use. I have ideas, but every time I decide on a photo I freak myself out and change my mind. I want some input from those of you in blog world. Please vote on your favorite photo in the poll below and help me out a little. A big thanks in advance!