Photography as an Outlet

Some students have a background or story that is so central to their identity that they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.

A good majority of the time, a camera body and lens are strapped around my neck, waiting to capture the world’s beauty. It seems like a cliche for a teenage girl to buy a camera and assume that she is a photographer. However, I see it differently. My eyes are focused lenses on the beauty in the world, and my camera is just an expensive tool to capture it. I am not a girl who wants to be famous for her photographs, like many girls aspire to, but instead to depict myself through photography.

I never, not for one second, contemplated being a photographer, though dozens of people have tried to convince me otherwise. My mind has been made up on becoming a nurse as long as I can remember. In my life, I want to have a profession that will always be a passion of mine. Becoming a photographer isn’t something I will always aspire to be. To me, photography is an outlet anyone can purchase at a Best Buy or Target. When I was thirteen years old, I saved money from holidays and household chores for months and months until one day, I was able to buy myself a dSLR camera. From that moment on, my life became much easier. Instead of seeing the leaves fall on a chilly autumn day with no reminder of that sight come winter, I was now able to freeze a moment and save it for generations to come, just how I saw it.

Sometimes I find it hard to express myself through thought, so instead I resort to my inner artistic desires to unmask my emotions. If one day someone close to me should get an outrageous haircut, my eyes would immediately create sample images out of everything I see, such as seeing my own hair outrageous in the mirror and seemingly presentable in person. These uncaptured images would eventually drive me to explore my ideas through photography. When I pick up my camera to shoot, my imagination runs wild, and inside I become truly happy.

In my opinion, the best thing that came out of photography was the ability to come close to my family. Having two younger brothers on hockey teams was not always the most ideal scenario, but with a camera in my hand, I became enthused when my parents would tell me that there was a hockey game in a few hours. Capturing my brothers hockey games was an outlet that led me to bond with my brothers and their teammates through action shots and editing photos in hockey rinks around the Northeast. In using my camera body and lenses, I captured moods, action, and all the emotions felt by my family. If I had not discovered myself through photography, I honestly doubt I would attend game after game in the chilled air at unruly hours of the morning and night, for family or not.

Many people have admired the beauty I can create with a camera, though that is not my goal. Photography is the way I portray myself when nothing else seems to work. It is a hobby that has shaped my creative mind, and will be a therapeutic outlet for years to come. Ten or more years from now, when I am living as a nurse with a family, I am certain a dSLR will be in hand almost every day to photograph the world around me.

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