I’ve been fascinated by photographing people for as long as I can remember. Growing up in the rural midwest, 4-H got me off to a very early start in my obsession with photography. I think I was 12 when I announced at the dinner table that I was going to be a photographer. Since then, I've lived and photographed beautiful subjects in Minneapolis, the Dominican Republic, Florida, New York, and now here in the stunning and cinematic Pacific Northwest.
Tell us a little bit about what you do (how could I introduce you at a cocktail party?).
I’m a graphic designer. Most of the work I do is for large nonprofits. I’m inspired by the work my clients do and it makes me feel like I make a positive impact.
When did you start on the path to where you are now?
I majored in design in college. I always knew I wanted to be self-employed. I started my business in 1995 and never looked back.
What do you enjoy most about what you do?
I love the work. I make a cup of tea and sit down in front of my computer on a Monday morning and it’s almost meditative. I also love the freedom it gives me to go for a bike ride on a sunny Tuesday, or go to a movie on a rainy Thursday.
What is the most important lesson you’ve learned through your work?
Care until the end. My clients do good work. I make sure I cross the finish line without losing energy on every project.
If you had to give one piece of advice to someone starting out in your industry, what would it be?
I have two:
Give your schedule headroom. Dedicate time to learn a new skill or work on your own self promotion.
Look for real relationships. Meeting one or two Communication/Marketing Managers each year who appreciate and respect my work gives me a more consistent stream of work than any number of social media followers. And when they move to a new job, I have their old organization as well as their new one as a client.