I moved to Denver in January and my car gave up the ghost in May.
My car went to my apartment and I went to my college graduation.
I'd be on foot for the next three years.
Walking those sidewalks with just my phone, I found an amazing world.
Taking an occasional snapshot was a fun way to interrupt the tap, tap, tap of my footsteps, but most of my photography (if we can call it that) was making obscure, idiosyncratic memes. I wasn't good at photography, so I carved out a little corner with jokes.
A joke was my goal when my sister, her family, and her husband's brother and his family (click here for a diagram) were visiting Denver and asked if I'd take their picture in front of the iconic Union Station.
While they tried to get everyone in place, I decided to take the picture before the pose—just trying to be funny.
The secret truth of all class clowns is that we use humor to bury our deep, raw sincerity--a sincerity that accidentally came through in this image.
I loved this image. Dad checking a diaper. Little cousin looking on. Moms trying to organize the mess.
In The Four Loves, C.S. Lewis writes that friendship sounds like, "What! You too? I thought I was the only one." and that was my startled reaction when I reviewed the image.
It was how I saw the world: unguarded, chaotic, hilarious. And somehow, quit by accident, that world view ended up in in a photo.
At the time, I didn't know what "voice" was and I certainly didn't know what "street photography" was, but this photo, taken almost by accident, was a micro dose.
This was a weird year. Grad school rejected my appeal, so I was officially dismissed. I quickly landed a full time job and an apartment two miles away from it. Still on foot, I'd grab images of the world I walked through..
But what made me smile were the simple moments in real life.
Nieces and nephews being adorable
Two old guys meeting for breakfast and Bible study at Chic-fil-a.
A comfortable couple on the light rail.
I loved these photos and would occasionally wonder if I should get a "real" camera and try my hand at "photography".
As if on cue, Apple announced their latest iPhone release which introduced a feature I'd been craving: a wide-angle lens. I watched the release plotting out how I could justify the upgrade when my sister-in-law, Cori (an artist in her own right) asked if I'd join her on "365 Days of Art" project: making one thing, every day, for the year 2020.
My oldest brother had done one of these challenges when he first got into photography and I figured that was perfect: I'd get the new iPhone, take at least one photo a day and, if I still enjoyed photography, I'd get a "real" camera.
I picked up the new phone and was thrilled with the results.
The colors were great, the details were great. I was stoked for the project. 2020 was going to be the best year yet.