The Dark side of myself

Recently I have conducted a few interviews in which I've been asked some very intimate and vulnerable questions about my life, some of which I have no idea how to even put into words. 

How does an artist explain their muse in words? For me it's something that is extremely hard to explain. 

When someone asks me, "Why do you gravitate more towards the "Darker side", all I can say is,  "That is just what I'm drawn too." Personally, my art is my way of expressing myself and my inner demons.  I can't speak for all artists, but I know for me, that my work is a reflection of myself. I literally pour my soul into my work. My attitude is my muse. My life experiences are what drive me, and what forces me to create the work I do. If you pay close enough attention to it, you will be able to tell how I'm feeling when you see a photo of mine. And thats what I want people to take away from my photos, a feeling. I want you to look at my photos and feel the emotions that I'm feeling, whether its good or bad. 

Growing up, and even in my adulthood, I've always suffered from depression and anxiety. I used to use writing as an outlet for my emotions, and now I channel that into my photography. I try to create something beautiful out of my pain, to show people that even in all the darkness, something beautiful can come of it. To me, pain is your most valuable tool when it comes to creating art, at least in my eyes. We all suffer from some form of illness, and finding a way to use that and create something that inspires others is all that I could ask for. I can't begin to tell you how many people have emailed me telling me how much my work inspires them. Its unreal to me, to have that kind of impact on someone else's life... I can't even put into words how that makes me feel. 

For all of you who have followed my work, and continue to do so, I am forever grateful to you. I hope that by me writing this will help everyone better understand why I gravitate more towards the darker aspect of photography. 



Home Is Wherever I am

It's been over a week now that I have been living in my trailer, and let me tell you, it's been pretty amazing. From traveling to see my friends and family, to meeting new people and having random adventures to the coast. It has no doubt changed my life already. 

I was guilty of living in the lap of luxury when it came to having the big house, the fancy cars, the nicest clothes, and wanting it all. What I didn't realize at the time was none of this is what truly makes a person happy. So often we conform to what it is society as a whole thinks is right. Owning a house, having kids, having the 9-5 job that we all loathe, thats what the American dream is, right? Wrong, well at least in my perspective. Don't get me wrong, some people build their happiness around owning the huge house, building a family and working the 9-5, but I have never been one of them. 

Even as a child I dreamt of visiting different places. I loved being outdoors, being one with nature. And clearly, not much has changed.  As much as I always wanted to do something like this, I'm not gonna lie, I was always a little nervous. Not having somewhere to call "Home", constantly wondering if you're going to be safe, where you're going to be, it's all a lot to take in. But I've quickly learned, thats half the adventure.  Home is wherever you are. 

Instead of spending my days sitting in front of the television being a couch potato, I have to be creative, and always on the move. Not having an ac in the summer definitely makes staying in one spot difficult. I don't really have the opportunity to just lounge around in my trailer and relax (It's too fucking hot) haha. But I'm also thankful for this. It has pushed me back into a good work out regime, forced me to be outside more often than before, and it has actually got me back on a normal sleeping pattern. Long gone are the late nights of laying awake binge watching mindless television, and welcome to waking up and making everyday a new adventure. 


The Trailer Life for Me

For most of you who follow my work, you know how passionate I am about traveling. A year ago I decided to watch a show on Netflix called "Minimalist" (If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend it), which got me thinking, Do I really need the big house with the white picket fence filled with things I don't need? And my answer was, NO! Those "things" aren't what make me happy, they're not what I need to survive everyday life. They're simply just things. Traveling is what makes me feel alive. Being on the road, seeing new places, and meeting new people, that is what I love and live for. 

For years I've held on to everything, like somehow it was going to make me happy when I looked back at it. Let me be the first to tell you, those things aren't what make life worth living. Living your life, making memories, and experiencing new things, thats what makes your life amazing. 

Why had I held on to so much from my past, and why wasn't I thinking more about my future?

After watching this documentary about two men who live the "minimalist" lifestyle it got me thinking. I could do this! Why am I not doing this? I'm constantly traveling for my photography career, to and from Bend to see my family who lives 3 hours away, and back and forth from Portland to Tillamook for my kids. Hell, most weeks I would only be home 1 or 2 days a week. I spent more time sleeping in my car traveling than I did at home. What was the point of spending $900 a month for a place I didn't even really spend time at. I could use that money for so many other things. Thats when I decided to buy something I could live and travel in.

For months I did research about living on the road. Do's and Don'ts. What to buy, where to park, how to survive... Most people called me crazy for even thinking of doing something so ridiculous, even though to me, it was anything but. It was a dream come true, to be as free as a bird. Wake up somewhere new everyday, and getting to explore the world we live in. They were worried about my safety, where I was going to shower (least of my worries), where would I go to the bathroom... the questions were never-ending. Even though I didn't know every single thing to tell them, I knew I would eventually figure it out. That's what life's all about right, trial and error.

One month before my lease was up on my house, I bought a utility trailer. And I'll be the first to admit, it's tiny haha. I'm not gonna lie and act like it's going to be perfect, its definitely going to take some adjusting, but I honestly couldn't be happier. My dad and I built hardwood floors, a platform bed with storage, and I stained all the walls the perfect color to accent the grain on the wood. 

Next week will be my final week living in an actual house, and as amazing as its been, I'm looking forward to seeing where this next chapter of my life takes me. I hope you all continue to follow me on this journey, I'm planning on doing a lot of traveling and soul searching in the next few months, so stay tuned.