Friday, January 3, 2014

An End and A Beginning . . .

by Katie

It is my great pleasure to introduce our newest FOL sister, Katie Austin!  Coincidentally enough, she is beginning her journey here at the beginning of a new year and with our focus this month being on "beginnings", it couldn't be more perfect! If you haven't been following her on Flickr or Instagram, you are in for a treat.  Her photography is amazing but even more than that, her storytelling just draws you in. She doesn't just post a  photo, she tells you a story and we thought she would fit in perfectly here at FOL.  So without further ado, I give you Katie!  ~Terri


January is an exciting month, isn't it? So full of energy and big new ideas, with creativity flowing like rivers. I really, really like new beginnings and fresh starts and the whole clean slate feeling of January - - - and it's not because my birthday is in ten days and a wake up and should really be made a national holiday. 

I love my birthday. 

But wait! Who is this nut that has taken over Focusing On Life and is talking about clean slates and new beginnings and her birthday, for crying out loud?

That would be me, Katie (or Kate, if you belong to my husband's side of the family). 

I am:

- - - a runner of thirty years and still going strong, despite my orthopedist telling me to ease up on the mileage and avoid running hills. He does realize that we live smack dab in the middle of the Arkansas Ozark mountains, doesn't he? Shoot, you can't swing a dead cat without hitting a huge hill around here.

- - -  yep, my little family are proud Arkansas Razorbacks and love calling those hogs: Woo! Pig! Soooie!  (now, if we could just have a winning football season!)

- - -  I am a momma to two kids, ages 14 and 20, but they will forever be permanently three years old in my mind's eye. You might say I am in slight denial over them getting older. I am married to a man that still takes my breath away and gives me belly aches from laughing so hard. I love the adventure my life has become since we both said, "I do" twenty-four years ago.

I was first given a camera when I was 12, one of those Kodak Instamactic cameras with the flash bulbs you could buy at the drug store. If I close my eyes hard enough, I can almost smell the burning they'd give off after firing. I must've taken thousands of photos since then, but it wasn't till 2011, right about this time of year, that I Got Serious About Photography. My husband suggested that I start a 365 project, never knowing how much I'd fall for photography. And I fell hard, reading everything I could, including the dreaded (and somewhat terrifying) camera manual that came with my first DSLR, a Nikon D3000. Well, I've practiced and practiced and read and read and upgraded to a Nikon D7100 and read and practiced some more and I still feel like I've only touched the tip of the iceberg. 

There's just. So. Much. Still. That. I. Want/Need to learn. I don't really have a "niche" yet, although I love wildlife, nature and sports photography, devouring my husband's copy of Sport's Illustrated when it comes in the mail.  He's even caught me watching football with him so I can begin to understand the game a bit more. And yes, he likes to tease me a a bit about it. 


So, that's pretty much me in a nutshell. I'm looking forward to 2014, I really am. I plan on taking a step back and not do a 365 project this year, rather I want to dive even deeper into photography and drink in and soak up everything I can about this wonderful gift that we all love so much.

What are some things that you want to dive into this year? I can't wait to hear them! 



25 comments:

Sarah Huizenga said...

Congratulations Katie! What a wonderful addition to FOL!!

Jeanne said...

Welcome to FoL Katie! Love Arkansas and will love looking forward to your shots and posts!

AFishGirl said...

Great to see you here. Looking forward to your posts and shots.

Dotti said...

Welcome, Katie! Even though I'm a true-blue UK fan {not the obnoxious kind}, I'm sure you and I will become great friends. If I can make peace with my Dukie son-in-law ... well, you get the picture. We'll just put those little inconveniences aside. :-D Seriously, I'm really glad you're joining us here at FOL and I look forward to seeing you every other Friday. Soooie!

kelly said...

hello my friend. you have no idea how it warms my heart to see your post this morning. you are a perfect addition and i can't wait to share the new year here with you. xoxo

Maribeth Huffaker said...

Hi Katie, nice to meet you! I guess you could say I'm your exact opposite. I am an ex-runner who despised any hill that got in my way, I have been devouring all things photography for a few years now and am just starting my 365 project this year, thanks to this wonderful group!

I live near Kansas City and get down to Arkansas as often as I can. It is an amazingly beautiful place. Welcome to FOL!...Rock Chalk Jayhawk!

heyjudephotography said...

So great to have you here with us Katie! I am really looking forward seeing your work here, as I've enjoyed your blog and photos on flickr for a long time now. Here's to a Happy New Year with a brand new sister!

Cathy H. said...

Katie, I'm so excited to see you here! We do share a lot of the same interests...Arkansas, Razorbacks and nature! You know I love your photography and I'll be looking forward to many more wonderful post here on FOL! Love the calendar shot!

Linda said...

Yay Katie! Great post to start off the year and your new journey! I am looking forward to seeing more of your beautiful photography and learning about it from you! You must be a runner/shooter! lol!

terriporter said...

Oh, Katie, as you can see, everybody is thrilled to have you here at FOL! Love your "getting to know you" post too and your calendar shot with the matching Chucks -- perfect! Both of us being Capricorns, we should get along great. I understand the "loving your birthday" mentality. Just had mine yesterday and drank in every second from the sunrise to the sunset. For the new year, I am starting a 365 again and hoping that the company I'll have with this group will help me stay on track. The last time I did one, I could really see the growth in my photography that shooting every day created. So great to have you here and I'm looking forward to your posts and beautiful photography!

Viv@within the Frame said...

Great to meet you Kate looking forward to more posts from you...

Deanna said...

I'm joining the rest of the gang and given you a big ole welcome to this FOL world of ours. Great introduction and I do love those shoes on the calendar....great idea, great composition and I so look forward to being a part of your world.

leigh said...

Welcome Katie!! We are so glad you have joined us! I'm right next door in Oklahoma so I have a feeling we have quite a bit in common :)

Susan said...

Such a great introduction to FOL! Im looking forward to seeing your photos and reading your posts! Great to meet you, Katie :)

Katie said...

Wow, what a welcome!! Thank you, ALL, for so much cheerleading and wonderful encouragement. I feel right at home here. ;)

Karen Gehrke said...

Hi Katie! I look forward to your posts on FOL...it's such a great blog with wonderful people! What's your IG handle???

Kim Stevens said...

Hi Katie, welcome to our humble abode!! So looking forward to getting to know to better!! xo

CarolHart said...

So awesome that you are here Katie! Looking forward to your future posts. Happy New Year and Happy Birthday!

Carol said...

I can't believe I never checked in this morning - and on a day off! I guess I just couldn't wait to shovel all that snow we got last night! And now I'm asleep in my shoes..... But anyway - welcome and I can't wait to get to know you better here - I already know that your photography is wonderful - and I think you're a GREAT fit! Happy new year!

susan said...

Welcome Katie! LOVE the energy that comes through your post! So happy you are here…adore your photos…and look forward to reading more posts from you. xoxo!

Karen Main said...

Hi Katie this was the most perfect introduction, you have left me gasping for more. Looking forward to post number 2.......

The Chicken's Consigliere said...

Hi Katie, happy almost Birthday. This shot made me laugh out loud. You are delightful, you really are. Good luck!

She Who Carries Camera said...

Congrats, Katie on your first post and introduction (even though I do know a bit about you already from your fabulous blog)!

Lynne said...

I think Happy Birthday needs to come first! National Holiday to you . . .
I am new to FOL and loving the new discoveries I am finding. I feel inspired to learn more and experience. Great intention for my seventy fifth year I think . . . All the best Katie . . .

Lisa Gordon said...

Congratulations on your first post, Kate, and a very Happy Birthday to you!

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