Thousands, certainly, of portraits; many hundreds of commercial assignments, and more weddings than I care to count. But what I remember most clearly are those first couple years at that studio, living and breathing photography every hour of every day, and acquiring the skills and techniques that I would continue to hone in studios and darkrooms for many years.
Mercifully, there aren't many pictures of me from those days, but of the few I can still find (and admit to) this one by my friend and classmate Terry McCarthy is the one I most enjoy sharing. And that was my dad's Nikon Photomic F. That was one sweet camera!
We had large-format cameras of all sorts at that studio, and medium-format ones as well. All these were new and wondrous to me, portals to incredible worlds of art and creativity. Eventually I saved up all my nickels and dimes and bought this Mamiya RB 67 and a couple lenses. I had that baby for years too, and even wore that one out. I guess I'm a little hard on my gear, but then again, these are tools, not art objects. I sometimes wish I still had them, but it's mostly digital now and that technology has taken my career to entirely new places. No regrets.
Would I do it all over again? In a heartbeat! Photography has taken me to fascinating places, to meet incredible artists, and work with wonderful people. And it brought me here.
My favorite writer Douglas Adams once wrote, "I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I ended up where I intended to be".