My love of cars has been a life-long passion. As a kid, I would play with Hot-Wheels and page through car magazines and coffee-table books dreaming about all the beautiful old cars and the exciting new ones. During freshman year of high school, I took a job at car-guy heaven. The building in Port Townsend, Washington, where Bergstrom’s Antique Autos is located has been a garage since 1917. The exposed concrete is seasoned with the scent of almost 100 years of oil and gas, and it was there I gained knowledge and had my passion for everything automotive even further engrained. I cleaned, sorted, and sold parts, cars, and memorabilia of everything automotive. One of my favorite jobs was to sort, price, and check the condition of old car magazines. I have no hesitation in saying I have probably looked through every Motor Trend, Hot Rod, Sports Car Graphic, and Car and Driver since the late 1940s.
Around the same time as my job at Bergstroms, I started getting into photography. Naturally, to the dismay of my high school photography teacher, almost every photo taken, developed, and printed had a car as its subject. I would walk the parking lots of the school, and go to every car show looking for something cool to shoot. “If you want to be a photographer professionally, you will have to shoot something other than just cars” — words I now enjoyably remind my high school photography teacher of from time to time.
After graduation, I attended Brooks Institute of Photography in Santa Barbara, California, and continued to shoot as many cars as possible. Brooks has one of the premier photography programs in the country, and although I learned how to light, position, and shoot almost any type of subject, the reason I went there was for their automotive photography class. After three years, and thousands in weekend rental cars to shoot, I received my Bachelor’s degree in Professional Photography.