I’ve been fortunate enough to work with some of the most talented photo editors and art directors a photographer could hope to collaborate with. But personal work is satisfying on a completely different level.
My wife, kids, and I were mid way down the length of California, en route to the Most Expensive Place on Earth, when an email came through from TrailRunner Magazine. They had picked up on an image I made of Western States 100 Mile Endurance Run pioneer Gordy Ainsleigh and were looking to lead a piece titled “Legends of the Trail” with it.
Needless to say, I was happy to be a part. But under the surface, there was a deeper sense of content. I had photographed Gordy months earlier not because I was paid to, or even asked to. I met with Gordy in a thicket of the Northern California foothills simply because it was the right thing to do.
Gordy was the first person to run the arduous 100 mile event on foot — back when it was strictly an equestrian event. And in under 24 hours. He is a true trail blazer, a man among men, and nothing short of a living legend. Gordy’s been photographed countless times. To have an image that I made purely out of respect for his iron will rise to the top on nothing but its own merit is deeply satisfying.
And cause to charge on.