Hi! I'm Kati (the goober behind the lens!) This is quite literally my first blog post ever, which is suprising because I'm a millennial. Shocker, I know. I wanted to stop in and introduce myself in a less formal way than on my About Me page.
I'm 34 and a Nevada native, I was born and raised in The Biggest Little City (Reno.) I put my heart and soul into everything I do, especially my family and my photography. Speaking of family, I have two kiddos (think Donnie and Darwin from The Wild Thornberries, except my daughter is Donnie.....) and an incredibly supportive and loving husband.
I didn't always want to be a photographer. Another shocker. It wasn't until I was 16. I wanted to be a Nat Geo photographer. I wanted to travel the world and take incredible photos of things that most people only ever dream of seeing. I started on the path of taking advantage of the opportunites at my high school (Go Colts!) I entered a Scholastic Arts compitetion that took place at a national level. I entered 4 images total for that year and 3 placed. Two of my photos having Gold placements (think Olympics) and the 3rd was a Silver. My two Gold photos were in a gallery at the Nevada Museum of Art for a few months.
The two images above on the left were two of my placing photos from that competition. The other two are another pair of images from around that time. The good ol' point and shoot camera days.
After high school, my creative side fell off the map. I'm still not sure why, but here we are. 2011 rolled around and I had my son. I picked the camera back up but it still remained just a hobby.
Fast forward to 2015. This is the year I would come to know an unbearable loss. My rock, my biggest supporter in life, and the man who would tell me when I messed up big time while hugging me harder. My dad. February 2015, my dad fell at work and broke his hip. He went in for what we thought was a normal hip surgery. Little did we know that he would come out of anesthesia with a totally different diagnosis. Stage 4 lung cancer. You may be asking how they found LUNG cancer when they went in for hip surgery. Well, the cancer had already spread to his pancreas by the time they found it on imaging. He was given 2 years and made the decision to start Chemotherapy. I took him to most of his chemo sessions. In 10 months, my bestfriend went from a bad-ass-Bruce-Willis type man to a shell of who he was. He passed away in December that year, barely even 10 months from his diagnosis. He took his last breath holding my sister's hand.
I told that story, not to make you cry or feel sorry for me but to drive home the point that life is short and memories matter. I don't have many photos of my dad before I picked up a camera when I was 13. Or my mother for that matter (lost her 4 years after we lost my dad.) The photos I took, I will keep forever. Each one kicks memories into gear and they come flooding back. Memories. MATTER.
My favorite photo of my dad is one I took on Christmas day. The day he gifted me a brand new camera. It is not a perfect photo and I could critique it for days but it is my absolute favorite because he was smiling and happy.
Since the loss of my dad, I have kicked my own ass into gear. I worked my butt off at my restaurant job, went through a divorce, worked in construction, had another child, got remarried and finally got to a point where I could quit my job to pursue photography full time. That puts us here, in the now.
I love my job. I love my clients. I love being able to send them a gallery of memories. Sessions are an adventure with me. Not a stuffy posing session. I adore forming genuine connections and bringing out the best in people.
In the end, you cannot relive memories. You can, however, forget them. I photograph so that you don't forget. So that you have these images to look back on in 20, 30, 40 years and say "Wow. I remember that."
Emotional rollercoaster is over. Thank you for riding. Until next time.