Wednesday, August 15, 2012

New Adventures, Butch/Femme Photo Project and Loss

Photo by Del R.
These past few weeks have gone by in a bit of a whirlwind. On July 22nd I officially registered my photography business with the state of Oregon and the city of Portland. I am officially a small business owner. I even have a brand new website, wendikaliphotography.com. Also, I am now a member of the Professional Photographer's Association.

If I thought I was jumping in with both feet when I left the accounting world, I was only partially right. NOW I'm jumping in with both feet. It's exciting and terrifying all at once. But, I plan to take it slow and go at it part-time for as long as I need to make it into a full-time gig. My goal is to get there within the next year and a half. During that year and a half I'll be working 7 days a week but if that's what it takes to make this dream a reality, then that's what I'll do. I am in love with photography and everything about it. It is my heart and my passion. Being behind the camera and seeing the world through the lens feels as natural as breathing to me.

The Butch/Femme Photo Project has been very well received by the community all over the US and even a few up in Canada! I've received some beautiful and heartbreaking answers to the questions I sent out to all who wish to participate. I am deeply touched by their willingness to share so openly and so freely. Their stories are so important and they should be heard and remembered.

So far I've had two photo shoots with project participants! I have four more scheduled this weekend, too! Meeting participants and photographing them has been incredibly inspiring and motivating. This project includes some pretty incredible and amazing people. I'm really very excited to see how it progresses. I'm considering creating a blog for it but haven't quite decided on that piece just yet. Once I get more images together and edited I hope to figure that out.

Last Tuesday brought some heartbreaking news for me. A beloved ex co-worker and her daughter were shot a week ago this past Sunday. Victims of domestic violence, which saddened and angered me all at once. Her daughter survived and was just released from the hospital today. She suffered 5 gun shot wounds. My co-worker and friend, Norma Jean Perrone, didn't survive. My heart aches for her and her family. She was a tremendously bright light in this ever darkening world.

This evening one of the motorcycle riding groups that she was a part of organized a memorial ride in honor of her. I took the night off from work to attend. I wasn't going to miss it for anything. We met up at Latus Motors in Gladstone, Oregon and rode out to Multnomah Falls for a candle light vigil. There were over 150 riders there. It was a beautiful memorial that soothed my saddened heart. The photos that I took tonight can be seen on my Flickr page.

Life is so precious.

In addition to all of these happenings, I've been preparing to go to Burning Man. Needless to say, life has been a bit crazy. Lots of good and a little bit of sadness. Not a bad balance if I do say so myself.