Just 3 years ago if I heard those two works spoken together I would cringe. Shooting weddings scared me. When I shot my first wedding in 2009, I was only an assistant. Yet, I was so nervous I threw up in the bathroom before the ceremony even started. When I shot my first wedding solo, I, again, was too nervous to even present the photos and book to the Bride. I just mailed it to her. Now, I’m only scared a little of the thought of sleepless nights of editing.
I am only a year into the start of my business, Mariah Alicia Visual. Its a slow and steady process that I’m humbled to go through. With summer season approaching, I’m mentally preparing myself for the weddings I have booked this season. I’m much more comfortable shooting weddings now. Over the last few years, I’ve grown into my own and I’m not as socially awkward as I use to be (for the most part).
If you or anyone you know needs a wedding photographer, you can view more of my sample work on my website. You can also drop my a line here, or skip all that and email me directly firstname.lastname@example.org.
In 2013, I randomly decided to move to Cleveland OH. It was the first of many reckless decisions and honestly my best one. I spent about 7 months living a carefree life. It was stressful; being broke and a homebody, reading beatnik poetry and sleeping till 2 pm. Through all that, I spent that time really coming into my own as an artist. Until the move, I was working constantly but had no clear vision as to who I was as an artist. It was like a poor man’s summer art workshop.
I painted and drew all the time. I also found a new medium; writing. I was reading a lot of Ginsberg and Kerouac at the time (I’m a beatnik head) and felt really inspired from the melancholy of my life. When I moved back to Buffalo, I stopped writing. It took me a few years to reread all that mess. So last year while living in FL, I felt that same melancholy I felt in Ohio and started writing again. After a few months, I dug up those Ohio poems and stories and edited them the best way I could and decided to make a book.
I may still go through with the book. I’m still working things out at my own pace. One day I’ll make up my mind. But for now here are some pages from my first draft.
Buffalo NY holds a special place in my heat. So I wanted my first post to be about my hometown. I was born and raised here. I started my artist journey here. Walked the Elmwood Village with friends, had many failed client meetings at Spot Coffee downtown on Chippewa, hired my friends as models when clients fell through. It was a tough start. Regardless of how slow my start was, I always had the hustling spirit of my east side upbringing to keep me pushing forward.
I moved out of state twice (Ohio and Florida). Both moves I’ve learned more about myself as an artist and how to start up my business. Somehow I always manage to come back. Whenever I return home, I find new things to be inspired (or annoyed) by. The gentrification of Buffalo is kind of a downer but that’s a post of another time. And blog. Nonetheless, I use my time back here to really mold all the things I’ve learned while traveling and living in other areas to better myself and grow my business.
Buffalo is cold, when it snows, it snows, and the people know how to drink all weekend and bounce back to work on Monday like it’s nothing. The Buffalo Bills never win more then 8 games a season and downtown smells like Cheerios. Its my home forever. I cant wait to see where I go from here. Maybe Ill open up a gallery, or marry a gallery owner, or continue to walk the Elmwood Village with friends and complain about all the apartment buildings that tower over the area. Either way, it will always feel like home.