100th Post!

September 27, 2010

In today’s post you won’t find any photos (sorry!), but instead, a journal entry, of sorts…

Today while working at Acerbis (my day-job) I was booking yet another flight for this fall and realized that by the end of this year I will have flown 75,000 miles, which is something I haven’t done since I stopped following the Supercross/Motocross circuit back in 2004.  I used to travel 20 weeks per year attending motorcycle races all over the states (and some in Spain and Holland).  Although within these past few years I have continued to travel to motorcycle races (they have been very far and few in between) I am now traveling equally as much for work (races) as I am for my photography business.

I have always LOVED flying.  In the past, I used to love flying because I got to watch he hustle and bustle going on in Atlanta’s airport, and would fly in anticipation of my destination.  I used to love flying to see my friends that would also travel the circuit and absolutely loved (and still do love) the smell of race fuel.  A very strange fact about me is that the day after a race, I would never (and still don’t) wash my hair.  Yes, yes, I do take a shower, but don’t wash my hair.  Why?  I love motorcycle races soo much that having the smell of the dirt and the motorcycle exhaust in my hair was (and still is) soo comforting to smell as I sat on the airplane on my way home.  I was able to take in the entire race experience from the previous day all over again as I sat in that confined space.

Nowadays, 6 years after traveling the “moto circus” my love for flying has changed quite a bit.  It is now the experience on the actual airplane that I love more than the destination (don’t get me wrong, I still love seeing my buddies at the races, the races themselves, and absolutely love photographing and capturing lasting memories for couples on my “destination” wedding trips), but nothing beats the experience of being on an airplane.  I look forward to getting on the airplane and for the first 30 minutes after the door closes, HAVING to sit in my chair, with no phone ringing and not being able to open my computer to work (which, nowadays, when I’m not sleeping, I’m either on the phone or working.  Period.) but instead I get to sit there, look out into the horizon (I always take a window seat) and just THINK.  Then, once the little “ding” goes off, I get excited all over again, knowing that for the remaining time I have on the airplane I can work away on my computer knowing that there are no distractions.  Just me and my computer.  I am so very productive on airplanes, and when the announcement comes on that all devices must be turned off, I get excited yet again, that I can “shut down” and once again stare into the horizon and be proud of what I’ve accomplished or simply just think.

What does this have to do with photography?  As I thought about all of this today, I realized that in the 25+ years that I’ve been flying, my love for flying has always been the same up until about a year ago…when I finally started making progress with my photography business.  I am busier than I have ever been both with my very exciting day job at Acerbis as well as with Cheatwood Photography, and I love every minute of it.  In December of 2007 I was asked to photograph my first ever wedding, which took place on June 21st, 2008.  I loved the experience soo much that a few months later I contacted a few local wedding photographers to see about getting some extra work in the field as a “second shooter” and it was Hillary Maybery who returned my call first.  She actually decided to hire me to second-shoot for her not because of my wedding photography experience (or lack thereof) but because as she simply put it “if you can run around and keep up with motocross racers and freeze their motion, I know you will do great shooting weddings.”  Ever since then I have been photographing weddings with Hillary, and this past year, even more on my own, and it hasn’t stopped there.  I now photograph maternity sessions, senior portraits, boudoir sessions (I am about to launch an entirely new and separate website for this business) and more!

So, I guess this random rambling of a blog post to celebrate my 100th post since the creation of this blog is my way to say THANK YOU.  Thank you Josh and Stacey for taking a big chance on me when you hired me to photograph your wedding (I am forever grateful for you two), thank you Hillary Maybery for believing in me and providing me with such great guidance, friendship and for continuing to challenge me with each and every new wedding we shoot together and thank you to each and every one of my clients who have let me into their lives to capture their most precious memories.