My intro to photography (at the age of 12, with my father’s 30-year-old Pentax Spotmatic) involved taking many photos of walls, lines, geometric patterns, and textures near my home. Growing up in the Midwestern suburbs, I tended toward either abstracts or conceptual pieces — either focusing on the details of the world around me or creating dreamlike settings, both options that conveniently left out the inoffensive but bland surroundings I saw every day.
Through college, I focused more on the conceptual, probably because I had a lot of free time. Or if not free time, odd hours to fill with something — anything — other than coursework. And taking a large number of photo classes was also a good excuse to develop elaborate ideas and setups, pushing into the realm of my imagination, engaging in some navel-gazing, and spending way too much time trying to figure out at exactly what hour the light would be at the perfect angle.