My love of photography came about in somewhat of a weird way. There was a girl I went to middle school with, her name is Kelsey Wright, and she starting doing photography and posting it. Her photos were the perfect manifestation of what she was going through and I remember feeling so inspired that I also had to try. From there it just ended up being a long term love affair that had many many ups and downs. To this day I still thank Kelsey for inspiring me to express myself – look where it’s ended up.
Before we get there though – lets just acknowledge that a lot of growth had to happen artistically and emotionally to get to this point. I got my first canon point in 2008 and boy did I think I was something. Here’s some pictures of my middle school days where I shot literally everything, but focused heavily on landscapes and black and white.
Early high school I started to hone in on shooting with people. I did a lot of experimentation with crazy filters and all kinds of things that are somewhat cringeworthy, okay a lot cringeworthy. But in a lot of ways, that little girl was not afraid of being wrong, she just created. Thank goodness for my friends who trusted me (;
Later in high school I decided that being a photographer was a real option for me in terms of careers. I started “Ah’mazing Photography” in 2011. Again a little cringeworthy but this girl was excited. I did quite a few senior portraits but ultimately found a lot of joy in photographing couples. Makes a lot of sense in hind sight. Enjoy some of my early couple portraits from 2011 – 2013.
*Enters Sammie Saxon* – this is the creative genius I owe so much of my growth to. Just before I left for college to study photography, I met Sammie. He took me under his wing, showed me how to level up my craft, and encouraged me to keep shooting always. To this day, whenever I see him – he asks to see my recent work. I spent a few summers back home shooting with Sammie and even doing an internship with him at Southern Views Magazine. He showed me the art of portraiture, particularly the fashion industry. Here are some of my favorite photos from our early shoots together.
Studying photography in college was much different than I expected it to be. I had to take several different art classes not pertaining to photography to understand the basics of art, I took several hours of art history, and there was a lot more conceptual exercises than I was expecting. But I would not trade my experience FOR THE WORLD. My time at Jacksonville University and the people I met there were everything I did not know I needed. Here are some of my favorite photos from my time studying art at JU.
Oh did I mention that 50% of my program was actually FILM!? Not video – film photography. I got to learn the art of photography from the most basic pinhole cameras, to 35mm, medium & large format, all the way up to digital. Film is something that I have recently gotten back into and I cannot wait to start shooting and developing in the darkroom again! Here are some of my favorite 35 mm projects I shot and developed.
Throughout my time in College I also discovered a love of self portraiture. I have hundreds of self portraits from over the years, but the biggest project was for my Senior Thesis. These portraits were about how anxiety and depression feel. I purposefully edited them to be dark so you would have to get close to see the details and printed them large scale to highlight how obvious anxiety and depression is in every day life and yet people still walk right past you as if you’re a ghost. Here are the final images from my thesis.
This is the sad part of the story – where I graduated with my degree – and ran away from my dream. I was absolutely terrified of becoming a “starving artist” so I went on to get my Master’s Degree in Education. While I do not regret this path one bit, I am a little sad for that version of me who was too scared to even try. I have been working in higher education for almost 4 years. About a year ago I started creating and shooting again. Things took off for me quickly and in January of 2021 my husband and I decided to open up Cirrus Gold Creative Company. Our plan was for it to be a small part time business doing photography and drone video. In 2021 I also faced some very life changing events that caused me to really reflect on where I want my life to go. I cannot imagine it without photography and I couldn’t imagine a better way to spend my days than documenting this incredible life.
Here’s some of my favorite recent work – can we get a round of applause for that glow up though!
This year we filed all of the paperwork to become a formal LLC. I put in a notice that I will be leaving when my contract with my current position ends in October to become a full time photographer. I have 8 months left until I’m a full time artist and I cannot believe this is really happening. After 14 years – I am finally done running away. I am ready to let this dream come true. Happy 1 year to Cirrus Gold – here’s to making things officially official!!
As we move into the new year our plan is to offer wedding photography and video services as our main offering because we are hopeless romantics. We will still be doing couples, engagements, senior, and family portraits as time permits. We also offer drone video services like roof inspections and things on an inquiry basis. We are located in Phenix City Alabama / Columbus Georgia area but are more than happy to travel!
And now you’re all caught up! It’s been a lot of ups and downs and there are several things in between that I will be sharing with you as I keep this blog. I hope you’re coming along for the journey.
Cirrus Gold is a Wedding Photography business based in Columbus Georgia and Phenix City Alabama area. We also do couples, engagements, business branding, and some family portraits. We are about to launch an entire drone video service so stay tuned for more information!