I’ve been taking pictures since I was a kid; field trips, family, friends, vacations. But it wasn’t until 2011 that I started to take it seriously. We were moving our family from Buffalo to Bend, and the discussion quickly escalated from “we should extend the trip and take a few weeks to make the move” to “let’s take the summer” to “let’s take the kids out of school and travel the country in an RV for a year.” So that’s what we did. Our two boys were at the perfect ages, 12 and 14. I knew that I wanted to document every adventure we took on this trip and it wasn’t just about memories with the kids; I myself was seeing parts of the country I’d never seen before.

Photographers are many things; artists, explorers, archivists. We are the keeper of memories. And because memories fade, that photograph needs to bring them back to life. When you look at a photo, it should invoke emotion, be a tangible representation of that moment in time. And if you are sharing that photo with someone else, it should make them feel like they were there with you or make them want to go see it for themselves.

Now, not every photo I take is a masterpiece; I have many photos of my cat sleeping in weird positions. But those still invoke emotion; they make me laugh. When I go out on a hike or have a new adventure and see something amazing, that photo needs to be worth a thousand words.
Lisa Bell