My love for photography began when I was about 13 years old and got a 110mm camera as a gift. My mother encouraged my efforts and said that I had a natural eye for the craft.
By the time I entered high school I had saved enough pennies to buy a fully manual Minolta 35mm camera and handheld light meter. My high school had an excellent graphics tech school with a fully equipped darkroom and print shop. My hunger for improvement had me reading everything I could find and joining a local photo club. By my senior year (1981), I had shot several portraits, two weddings and did publicity shots for a couple local bands. In addition to shooting for the yearbook and school paper, I also had photos published in the Lewiston Sun Journal.
In 1981 I began my journalism studies at the University of Maine in Orono. During my years at Orono I took every photojournalism course offered, enjoyed hours in the campus darkrooms and served a semester as Photo Editor for the Daily Maine Campus newspaper.