Confucius say, "Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life."
The first time I heard this, I remember thinking, "Confucius, you are an idiot! How can people love working?" I never thought that people actually liked working, let alone love it.
I was a teenager when I was gifted a simple digital camera. Taking pics with my friends, of my nephews and niece as babies, of vacations that I took with my family – I was having the most fun! I didn't go anywhere without taking my camera with me. When in school, we were asked what we wanted to go to college for. At first I said a marine biologist (I'm obsessed with orcas), but, my teacher asked me, "Why not a photographer?" Why not a photographer?! I love the feeling of being able to stop time! It makes me feel like I have superpowers – and who doesn't want superpowers?! For awhile, I considered it. But, for some reason, I had convinced myself that it couldn't be done. No way I could make a career in photography. So instead, I started going to school for Early Childhood Development. I lasted a few months, but just couldn't do it. I didn't feel happy and I was extremely bored during classes. So, I quit.
After quitting, life happened. I had a baby boy (Spencer Dean Salfer, who is now 7), moved to a town I lived 15 minutes from, but had never heard of, got married (to the love of my life, Kyle Francis Salfer), and had job after job after job (I hated 7 out of 8 of them). After having my second child (a girl, Khloe Raelynn Salfer, now 4), I was jobless and wondering what to do. A couple of days after my daughter was born, my maternal grandma passed away after a long battle with cancer. During that time, my mom spent time with my grandma before she passed, planned a funeral, etc. The most she held Khloe was maybe 15 minutes. About a week after my grandma passed, we went to my other grandma's house for my cousin's confirmation party. We showed up, and my parents were already there. My grandma held Khloe for a bit, along with some of my aunts and uncles. After that, she went into my mom's arms – that is where she stayed for the next 3 hours. My uncle had his Canon 40D DSLR with him. I asked him if I could play around with it. He said yes. The very first photo I took was of my mom holding Khloe. There is so much technically wrong with the photo – the coloring is off, it's compositionally off, etc. But I don't care! Because I know how happy my mom was at that moment. I know the story behind her holding that baby girl.
That is my why! To be able to freeze a memory, to freeze an emotion for an eternity!
After that, I decided to sign up for college. I went to Ridgewater for two years. I set a goal, and I achieved it – to graduate with honors. I graduated with an Associates in Applied Science Degree in Professional Photography and a Diploma in Professional Photography. I made some incredible, life long friends, I have learned so much about photography, but I also learned so much about life.
I guess you could say that I am a believer in what Confucius say – I have made a thing I love into my career!