Can you tell us a bit about your passions beyond “work”?
From a young age, I’ve always had an interest in exploring nature. I remember visiting Wissahickon Valley Park in Philadelphia with my parents and exploring the trails along the creek and falling in love with the scenery.
As an adult, that love for exploring nature just intensified and grew into this passion for wildlife photography. I still visit Wissahickon Valley Park a lot and now I take my daughter and she enjoys many of the same things I did at her age.
A key ingredient to building a sustainable future?
If we want a sustainable future we need to tie nature and education together. We should prioritize learning how to live on this planet and coexisting without drastically depleting natural resources and directly causing the extinction of plants and animals…
What have been your biggest challenges?
One of the biggest challenges for me was overcoming the learning curve associated with birding. I was intimidated by the seasoned veterans who could name every bird in the book but luckily the birding community here in Philly is very friendly and I learned a lot just by going out and asking questions.
What do you do when you get out and away from the office/lab/kitchen?
I love going for walks! I can take a quick walk around the block or spend half the day in the woods. Any chance to get outside and use my camera instantly puts me in a better mood. My dream is to be able to wake up every day and photograph birds and still provide for my family.
What other brands do you love?
A couple brands that I love are @natureunderyournose and @kayaklanco who led a kayaking tour for me and my family. Everyone enjoyed themselves on the water and we’re definitely going again this summer. Now that I have lighter, more compact binoculars, I cant wait to see what’s out on the water!
There’s also groups like @incolorbirdingclub and @phillyqueerbirders who both lead exciting and informative bird walks around the Philly area with missions focused around inclusion and representation.
What keeps you going?
My daughter, Leia, is a huge motivator for me. We both share a love for exploring nature, and we have a passion for learning about the wildlife we encounter. Spending time outside, exploring nature, and observing animals is a perfect way for us to bond.
I’m really blessed to have a kid who’s willing to go on adventures to Barnegat Lighthouse State Park to walk on the beach in January and spend several hours in the car while we drive through Edwin B Forsythe looking for waterfowl and other birds. Fingers crossed she stays this way forever.
A personal style?
I think my style of photography is “up close and personal.” I enjoy showing the beautiful variations of colors, patterns, and textures that occur in nature and wildlife. I feel like we oftentimes overlook the beautiful wildlife around us and I want to inspire people to get out and explore the world around them.