What lies ahead?

In Film, Inspiration
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Although Viewfinders is a fresh start for us all, many of the women here have shared space online before. As one of the new kids on the block, I think that my beginning requires a little bit of an introduction.
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About six years ago, with great trepidation, I dipped my tiny toe into social media by posting my first photo on Flickr. I realize it’s quaint in our 2015 tweet-every-thought world, but after a few years of lurking around online, it was both terrifying and thrilling for me to share anything openly over the ether. But I had a burgeoning interest in photography, and a little voice inside that would not quiet. It egged me on, and eventually I was convinced that opening up just a little to the wide world would help me grow.

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Those first steps were small and deliberate. I joined a few groups, made a comment or two on images I admired, posted in a few pools, and began participating on photography sites that offered encouragement and inspiration to all – no matter your experience or skill. Looking back, none of it was a big deal, but in the moment every single time I hit post it felt like a risk.

After about six months of active posting I made a real connection with a wonderfully warm woman who was much farther along her photographic journey than I. I remain indebted to her for seeing something – my intent perhaps, because it certainly wasn’t my skill – in those early photos. Her encouragement bolstered my confidence, and her remarkable progress as a photographer over the course of a 365 self-portrait project pointed the way for me in terms of what could be achieved through passion and regular practice.

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In the intervening years I’ve taken many more risks with my photography, in most instances egged on by that little internal voice, and bolstered by an ever-growing chorus of support from the community of amazing souls and talented photographers whom I have met online and am now lucky to call friends.

When Viewfinders asked me to join, I was gripped by that familiar combination of dread and thrill. I now know to lean into that feeling, no matter how scary. I said yes before I even knew what my responsibilities would be – before I had the chance to think about it too long.

Opening up and sharing your art can feel incredibly risky, because when you do you make yourself vulnerable by putting a little bit of your heart and soul out on display, but the rewards for that risk, they are manifold! Consider that a little risk and one connection put me on a path that led me here, to this beautiful space, and to you.

I can not wait to see what lies ahead for us all as we create this new community together.

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Keep your eyes wide open,



  1. You and I? We’ve had the same start. And likely around the same timeframe. I’ve enjoyed watching your photography unfold over the past few years and it’s comforting to know that I’m not the only one that hesitated through the beginnings. Thank you for sharing your beginning with us all!

    • Hesitated . . .hesitating . . . I still do it, Angie, I just try to shorten the time I prevaricate with each scary wonderful opportunity.
      And there’s strength in numbers!. So glad to be here with you!

  2. Debbie, I’m so pleased that you took that step and all the ones in between that brought you to sharing your images and your voice here.

    • Thank you so much, Debra! Such lovely company to be keeping!

  3. I have happy tears from reading your post. I have loved walking so much of this journey with you. I think you started on Flickr a year or two before me, but I do know you were one of the women that encouraged me. I can’t wait for this next phase in our journey. (I love your sign off!)

    • Oh, Staci. It’s hard to remember where things started, but I think maybe it was BAM, no? And we have taken almost all of these steps in tandem, on our opposite coasts, it’s really amazing. SO happy to be sharing this adventure with you!

  4. I am so glad you said yes. We are all thrilled to have your talent and your energy with us on this amazing new adventure!

  5. Oh this takes me back to those early days of flickr when I met you virtually. And how extraordinarily lovely it was to meet you in the real world a few years later. Thank you for saying yes.

    • Really, how could I say no? Oh, I spent entirely too much time on the computer back the, but from bench Mondays to fence Fridays, there seemed always to be a reason to go back on and you’d always find someone there.
      Now I daydream about the time we get all of your crew and mine around a table & your children can school mine in the fine art of punning.

  6. Your beginning and mine are very similar. I have loved getting to know you and your work online and am so thrilled we are working together on this project.

    • It’s wonderful to know we have travelled along the same road, Kim. And now, on to new adventures, together! It’s really exciting.

  7. Love this post. Love this line: “I now know to lean into that feeling, no matter how scary”. And, I love that you are here with us. Just fab!!

    • I am over the moon and turning somersaults, Christy!

  8. i love that you now know to “lean in” to that feeling. That inspires me.

    • You know how much I admire the way you use your camera, Meg. We are a mutual inspiration society.

  9. Beautiful, Debbie. I’ve loved watching you grow into yourself as a photographer through the years and am very happy to see you here.

  10. Thank you so much, Deirdre. You are one of the most generous photographers I know, always ready with practical advice and honest feedback. I know I would not be here were it not for you!

  11. I’m so happy you said yes! And I feel as if I know you from all the years we have traveled together and learned from each other, encouraged one another. And I know this was a really big leap for you…to say yes.

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