I can't even start to say how excited I was when I found out that my first photo got published...and it was kind of by accident.
So, one of the genres of photography I really enjoy is surf photography. It's very different than any of the other types of photography I do. It's also pretty much the only style of photography that I shoot people in. I really appreciate the style, grace and power of surfers and I try to bring that out in my images.
In July of 2017, I went to Oceanside, CA for the Supergirl Pro. This contest is the premier surfing contest in the US that is only for women surfers. It includes girls from the junior ranks all the way up to those competing for the WSL (World Surf League) world title. I thought this was the perfect place to practice surf photography on my new-ish Canon 80D in preparation for the US Open the following week. I took a ton of shots and thought I got some decent ones. After editing them, I posted several to Instagram as usual. When doing this, I always tag the surfers whenever possible and many times, they like and/or comment on them. One of the ladies, Paige Hareb, a QS (Qualifying Series) surfer from New Zealand asked if she could share one of my images on her Instagram, to which I said yes of course. This hasn't been the first time one of the pros shared one of my photos.
Fast forward a few months. Paige sent me a message on Instagram and asked if she could use the image and if she could get a high resolution version. Of course I obliged, since any time I can get my name out there and get exposure, I do. Another month or two later, I was watching Paige's Instagram story and I saw her thanking New Zealand Surfing Magazine for writing and article about her (she had just qualified for the World Tour) and what did I see but my photo!!! I was so excited. I messaged Paige and she said that she would have the magazine send me a copy. Within an hour or two, they contacted me for my address and a week or two later, I had my own copy.
No, I didn't get paid for it, but I was credited and I gave permission to Paige to use it. Hopefully I will get a chance to get photos published in the future as well. I also hope to parlay this into being able able to catch up with Paige on the US leg of the tour to shoot some of her free surfs. Regardless, this has been a big step for my photography.