I've been exploring photography throughout my years. I received my first camera as a Christmas gift when I was 12. Although I loved taking pictures with it, it was unaffordable and awkward. When I purchased my first professional camera at 19, exploring my world with this new camera made me realize how important composition was. Over time, as I use my camera for trying to capture the world around me for my painting purposes, once in a while I'll shoot a photo that didn't need to be converted to a painting - it already had all the right elements. The advent of digital photography and computers, gives people the ability to have an in-house darkroom has enabled me to produce better, more creative work than I could have before.