Beginnings – About Me

English: South view along west side of Olmstea...

South view along west side of Olmstead Street in Cohoes, NY, USA (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Where I’m From

I grew up in Cohoes, NY, a small city just outside of Albany.  During my youth the city began its downturn.  What used to be a mill city on the Hudson River specializing in textiles was now elderly and low-income housing where the mills were converted into subsidized housing.  I’m the son of a firefighter and a furniture saleswoman.  In Cohoes, that was good.  I am the youngest of seven children, four girls and three boys.  We grew up in a three bedroom, one bathroom, two-family house.  My parents owned the downstairs unit and my grandparents the upstairs.  The oldest sibling living at home had the luxury of having their own “room”…the uninsulated back porch.  Not much, but it afforded them some privacy.  Since there is a large spread in ages, I don’t remember the times when all of us lived at home.  My oldest sister is nineteen years older than I am.  Although things were tight, it’s what we knew.  As far as I was concerned, it was nothing out of the ordinary.  I lived in that house, in the same bedroom, until I graduated from high school…and then again after my first foray into college didn’t work out as planned.  Let’s just say that even though I graduated with honors and won an appointment to the U.S. Air Force Academy, young and dumb won out.  Would I change anything?  No, I wouldn’t.  Not given what I now have.

Where Am I, & How Did I Get Here?

I am currently living in Old Orchard Beach, a smallresort town on the coast of Southern Maine.  I am married to a truly wonderful woman (she must be to tolerate me), Raina and we have three children, Allie, Riley, and Jake.  I met Raina while living on the Jersey Shore.  Yes, she’s a Jersey girl…or at least she used to be.  Big hair, hanging out in Seaside, all the things you see on MTV, that was her.  We worked together at a discount retail store called Caldor.  She worked in the office and I was a Department Manager.  We quickly discovered that dating while working together wasn’t going to work, so she left to work at a bank and I continued on in my retail career.  That career carried with it several moves either from promotions within a company or changing companies to continue to try to “get ahead”.  Between 1993 and 2000 we moved from Jackson, NJ (our first apartment together), to Syracuse, NY (where we got married), to Clifton Park, NY (two different apartments), to Norwood, MA (an apartment and then a townhouse), to Portland, Maine.  While living in Portland we had our two daughters and I left retail to try my hand at fire sprinkler system design working with a friend in a small company.  We went from renting an apartment, to renting a house, to owning a house.  Portland was a very expensive city to live in and the schools weren’t where we wanted our children to go.  We now find ourselves in OOB, where we had our son, where I was laid off due to the crash in the economy, where I am now.  I am a full-time student trying to earn my associates degree in Paramedicine.  I am a Lieutenant on the Old Orchard Beach Fire Rescue Department where I work part-time off-season and way too many hours during the summer.  I am a plumbers assistant part-time as well.  I am also dealing with sarcoidosis, which brings its own set of challenges.

Sunrise captured from under The Pier in Old Orchard Beach.

Sunrise captured from under The Pier in Old Orchard Beach.

Photography & Me

Photography for me is a means to express the world as I see it.  What began as an elective course in college has become something that I truly enjoy.  Most of my work involves the world where I am, Old Orchard Beach, on the coast of Southern Maine.  I do not travel to exotic locales.  I do not book grand expeditions.  I seek intriguing subjects in and around my community, my family and friends, wherever I may happen to be.  Though I spend most time doing nature and landscape photography, I also work in portraiture, sports, events, and documentaries.  I hope you enjoy your visit and that I’m able to convey to you what it is I see in the world around me.