Half a Century

My favorite number is 50. Since high school I have loved this number.

Our very eccentric family friend, Fancy, used FIFTY for EVERYTHING. Noun, verb, adjective. Everything was FIFTY.

“This painting is FIFTY.”

“It’s been 50 years since I saw you.”

“I ran fifty fast.”

We both dreamed of what being 50 would be like. And at long last I am now officially FIFTY 50 years old!

My first five decades on planet earth are now in the record books. Triumphs, mistakes, heartaches and deep love. On YouTube I recorded a heartfelt message to pet photographers but the message is really for YOU too.

We are often labeled and stereotyped and made to feel fit into a box someone else made. So many expectations and pressures to be or act a prescribed way.

While succumbing to these expectations can feel safe and orderly, it can also feel suffocating and lonely. Especially if parts of you squish out the corners or over the top of the box or escape the box completely.

Such is the life of a self employed creative. I ooze all over.

Sometimes I feel like a “Boomer” with all my adult responsibilities firmly handled. I cleaned the bathroom, and wrote the blog, and put money in a retirement fund.

Other days I want to be a “Gen Alpha” crying in a department store from sheer exhaustion. Or playing for hours in a field. Or never worrying about retirement funds.

But, every day I feel a little like an outsider.

πŸ’° No traditional “stable job” where a paycheck is given even if no clients walk in the door that day.

πŸ€·β€β™€οΈ Where people constantly ask me “You are a pet photographer … full time?”

πŸ₯In an office where I am the boss and my Twitter advisors are actual little birds and my main Board Member would rather sniff fire hydrants than advise on critical projects.​

But I love my life! I love running a business, photographing your pets, scripting commercials for businesses, consulting, and teaching.

I know that many people want a place they can feel understood and supported too. Like they belong. Today I am launching a brand new website for Pro and Aspiring Professional Pet Photographers:


Although you may not be a pet photographer I really wanted to share this win with you.

For the last four months I have gathered all the courses and resources I’ve created over the years. AND I added a brand new Community Center membership area.

This was a huge undertaking for me and I didn’t always feel up to the task. Do I have enough knowledge? Will I have the time and energy to devote? Will anyone join?

But now that it’s done I am so proud!Β 

The website launches officially today, Friday, April 2, 2021 and I don’t know yet if anyone will show up today. But I know I showed up and I will be here as a place to gather and be accepted and encouraged.

While I wait though I am celebrating this goal and my big 50 with my favorite coffee and breakfast sandwich enjoyed at a local natural area.

I am looking forward to mentoring fellow pet photographers and forming a community alongside my photography and video work here at Silver Paw Studio.

Thanks for being part of this journey!