When I was in high school I wanted to be a photographer. It was the only thing that came very easily to me. I took my first photography class in third grade, and we made pin hole cameras. I never thought about composition or lighting. I knew those things instinctively.
If I could have spent my entire high school career in the dark room I would have done it. It was such a time of self doubt, both in my personal and academic life. I didn't feel comfortable challenging myself and was hoping to blend in with the crowd. During that time I had three teachers, Dr. Hunter, Mr. Drake and Mr. Griffith, who taught me that passion was contagious and blending in and getting by was not the best way. Dr. Hunter and Mr. Griffith both taught me English. I've loved reading and writing since I learned the skills, but I lacked confidence. Reading aloud petrified me, and 6th grade sentence diagrams made me want to give up as a writer for life. Dr. Hunter and Mr. Griffith taught me that I did not need natural talent to be passionate about a subject. The love for literature and writing could help me overcome my fears and acquire new skills. They instilled confidence in me and allowed me to take chances in both my writing and opinions.
Mr. Drake taught me history. Up until the point when I got him as a teacher, I hated history. Every previous person who taught me the subject made me feel as if I was born to fail it. I did not know dates or sequences of events, and I just stopped trying. Mr. Drake taught me that history was a story. His love for the story and interest in the details transferred over to me, and I started to get interested myself. He taught me that history is as much about writing, making an argument, and proving a point, than it is about strict memorization. He allowed me to use my writing as a way to succeed in his class, and he showed SO MUCH confidence in me that I became extremely confident in myself. So much so that I ended up switching my college major from photography to history because I wanted more of a challenge, and because of Mr. Drake believed I excel in the subject.
These days I freely express my passion for photography, writing, and history. I never feel ashamed to nerd out over a cool historical detail of a house or a book I can't stop reading. My teachers at Westminster taught me that having passions are what make people who they are.
This house located at 2878 Habersham Road, was designed by Cooper and Cooper and built in 1935. As I was photographing the home, I heard the owner say that it was the location of the "Gone With the Wind" premiere party here in Atlanta. Talk about worlds colliding: photography, literature and history all at one time! There are so many historic views in this house, and photographing it felt like stepping back in time. Without that love and confidence my Westminster teachers gave me, I'm not sure I would have fallen so hard for this house. Loving the beauty and history of houses, and writing about that on this blog is a direct result of everything I learned from my favorite teachers, and I am SO thankful. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!
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