September 10, 2010

My Story

Hey again! So here's my 2nd post of the week. The post where I talk about all of the new and exciting things happening around here (or at least with Alisha Hurt Photography). It's going to be long, so sit down, buckle up, and hang on tight. If somehow you manage to get through the whole thing, thank you for your patience. I'll give you a cookie or something.

Here we go! A little background info: I've spent most of the past 6 years (wow, has it really been that long?) learning, practicing, trying, failing, practicing, trying again, succeeding, learning, and failing, over and over again. I get asked often how I got started in photography, so I'll explain that here too. I'm a self-taught photographer. Growing up, I always had a throw away camera on me (that's all I could afford) and then when I graduated high school my parents bought me a little digital point and shoot camera. At that point, I still had no idea I would ever do anything with it. It was just fun. Anyway, I went to a junior college for two and a half years and then dropped out (or just didn't go back after my 6th semester). For the first semester or year (I don't remember), I had no idea what I wanted to do. I grew up in a really artistic/crafty family, so I always thought I would do something in the arts, but I also knew I didn't want to be a starving artist, so I wouldn't major in just art.

While at school, I was mostly taking all of the basic courses, with a couple art classes thrown in there. Then, in one of my classes, I met a girl who was majoring in graphic arts and photography, so I decided I would just major in that since I couldn't decide on anything else. I started the program, but didn't finish because I got offered a job in Dallas at a law firm (I know, random). Anyway, by the time I had quit, I had only taken one black and white, film photography class and a few graphic art classes. I managed to learn the basics in photography (and pay for the book that costs more than my right arm) to get me started.

It never bothered me that I didn't finish. School was never my "thing" and my parents never pushed me to stay and graduate (which I'm thankful for). I don't learn well in a classroom setting, I'm too shy to ask questions, and with art it's mostly the talent that gets you through your job anyway. I've always been happy with my decision. (Side Note: I hope this isn't discouraging anyone from going to college. College is a good thing for most, God just took me another direction.)

So that puts us up to about mid 2006 now?

At this point, I had already gotten a better camera and had been taking jobs from people on and off. I would spend hours and hours on the computer learning Photoshop. (That can be the most frustrating program in the world if you don't know what you're doing, I know. This is where the schooling would have been nice, but that's ok. I managed.) While this was all going on, I managed to move pretty much all over the DFW area until I finally decided I was going to just move to Dallas since I had to commute there everyday anyway. So, I signed a lease on an apartment in Uptown, fell in love with it, and decided I would stay there a while. While I was there, two of the jobs I was asked to shoot were out in California (about a year apart) which is where I met and fell in love with my future husband, who would then move me off to California, thousands of miles from my little life in Dallas, TX.

So I say all of this to put me to 2010. In the past year that I've been here, I've just been working on adjusting to the new life, soaking up the gorgeous weather (while trying not to burn my pasty white skin), and slowly starting up my business here. I find it interesting looking back this far, from where I came from. I can definitely see God's hand in my life. If I wouldn't have quit school, moved to Dallas, became best friends with Wana Banana, I would have never met and married Shaun, who moved me to Northern California where I'm basically starting from scratch again (just with a bigger portfolio.) :) Anyway, I'm loving the experience and I'm really excited to see where it goes.

There are a lot of changes in the midst happening right now. I'm currently in the process of getting a business license, website update, blog update, and working on getting a printing lab so I can start doing all of the printing through me. For various reasons, I'm also going to discontinue shooting weddings. I feel like my work is much stronger in other areas, and I'd like to put all of my focus into those categories. I've come a long way, and I know I still have a long way to go. Thank you to all of my fans out there who have been following me for some time now. You guys are precious to me and I wouldn't have made it this far this fast without all of your support.

Last weekend, we went up to our cousin's parent's house. They live at about 5000ft elevation so you can imagine how bright the stars are up there. Shaun and I decided we were going to go out and take pictures of the stars, so we drove out to the darkest spot we knew of, parked, and then ended up mostly playing with the headlamp they gave us to watch where we were going. The image above and this one below were my favorite pictures. Shaun would make stuff up and draw it, and I would just take the pictures. I normally wouldn't put the last one on here, but I thought it was pretty creative/funny. I had no idea what he was doing until he posed with the light on him. He had to walk and turn on and off the light with each "lazer" you see, and then he drew the gun really fast and posed with the light on him all within about 20-25 seconds.

Also, (wow this is the longest post in history.) I woke up Saturday morning and Shaun said he had a surprise for me. I ran downstairs to find this on the ceiling:

A little homemade hot air balloon with a letter inviting me to this. :) We leave EARLY tomorrow morning. So early, I'm not even sure if I should go to sleep tonight. We'll see how long I make it. I'm sure I'll post pictures soon so watch out!

If you made it this far, I owe you a lifetime supply of cookies.


Tifany said...

Awesome pictures...great story. I can't wait to see your business grow from here.

And I love the "hot air" balloon.
My brother can be creative if he has to. :o)

Laura said...

I would like my Chocolate Chip Coffee Cookies mailed to Turkey please. :)

I seriously need to get you a photo shoot in Turkey....I'll let you know if I find a rich person with an event....

Alyssa said...

I loved this post! Your story is awesome, and I can totally relate to the college not being your "thing" because I am the same way. I just don't like it one bit.

Also, you owe me a lifetime supply of cookies :)

WV: miners - Them there cookies are miners, Jonathan, not yours!