My name is David, and I am a professional photographer based out of New Jersey.   It all started over 12 years ago, back when high tech cell phones were just becoming all the rage. Always wanting to have a phone no one else had, I imported my phones from Europe, and in this case, it was a Nokia with a very “high end” Carl Zeiss lens on its camera. I put the words “high end” in quotes because we all know that branded lenses on camera phones is the equivalent of branding a shoe with an athlete’s name…you won’t jump higher or run faster, but you sound great telling your friends all about it.

I have been in art school since the age of 5, and have always been fairly creative, so naturally, the freedom of expression photography allows one to achieve quickly jumpstarted my desire to get into the hobby. I know what you’re thinking….”did he just say hobby?” Yes, yes I did. Ask any professional photographer, and they will all tell you that it all started as a hobby. You don’t think we all just buy $8000 camera bodies and $20,000 worth of lenses just to play around, do you?

Bird1One day I was in my backyard and I saw a bird fly over and sit on a branch about 2 feet away from my face. I quietly reached into my pocket and pulled out my shiny new Nokia phone with its 3.15 megapixel powerhouse of a lens and snapped my first “professional” photo. I brought it inside, downloaded the image off the card, ran it through some free photo editing software and presto….my first photograph…..
Quickly realizing the fact that a cell phone isn’t the best choice when trying to pursue one’s love of photography, I decided to get the best point and shoot I could afford and started carrying it around with me everywhere I went. Over time, I started taking trips specifically for the purpose of photography (that part of the hobby has turned into an obsession since I started buying vehicles to help me along on said trips) and was learning at an incredible pace.

2188239316_54989b417c_mAfter a few years of playing around with a point and shoot, I decided to spend some money and pick up my first DSLR, which was a Canon 30D. I was reading every photography book I could get my hands on, and started learning photoshop, which was quickly becoming another passion of mine (borrowed from the master manipulator himself, Ansel Adams). My photos were starting to improve and began having “elements” of real photographs, like depth of field va2186243146_57b7a06626_mriations, motion, bokeh, etc.  

Fast forward another couple of years, I finally started to feel comfortable enough with my work that I wanted to do it professionally. Thinking that all photographers start out shooting for the likes of Condé Nast or Vouge magazines, I began searching for work in fashion. Realizing fairly quickly that I did not have the skills, connections, nor the proper equipment, I climbed down from cloud 9 and started looking for any work I could get….if the likes of Art Wolfe are King Cheese, I would be the proverbial rat. I managed to beg my way into a jewelry store that let me shoot some of their in-house made designs for their website.  The only catch was, I was not getting paid. They would give me the credit and the opportunity, and I would give them the photos. Beggars can’t be choosers it seemed, so I agreed. When I got there, I realized that I did not have a lightbox to photograph the jewelry properly, nor did I have the money to purchase one.   Being the creative soul that I am, I was able to run to the nearest office supply store and make a lightbox for a few dollars with minimal materials…lightboxMy nervousness was enough to discourage any more professional work, but I stuck with it and the jewelry store was extremely happy.  I learned two very valuable lessons: always be prepared and do not take on jobs that are over your head.

Over the years that followed, I began doing small jobs for actors, aspiring models, new startup businesses, as well as documenting my travels.  I would go out every weekend either to the zoo, the botanical gardens, or into New York City and just practiced honing in my craft to the point where I was comfortable going after getting major work from well known clients.  My work has been featured by numerous publications, by one of the big three auto manufacturers, as well as various wildlife organizations.  I hope you have enjoyed learning about my background, and I thank you for visiting.