My Passion ~ My Life ~ My Photography
* M Y P A S S I O N
"My photography is defined by my conviction, vision, passion and inspiration".
"Don't aim for success if you want it; just do what you LOVE and BELIEVE in, and it will come naturally".
This quote had significant meaning for me when I decided to start a part time photography business in 2011. It was to be an on-the-side venture along side my other job. More of a hobby really. I LOVE photography! Whether it's taking photos or editing them...it's my unequivocal passion. I believe each of us has a God-given talent. Many people have told me photography is my talent.
HI! I'm Connie Wilson...owner and photographer of Ayana3 Photography. Let me begin by explaining the 'name' and why I chose it for my photography business. I wanted something different and unique, & I didn't want to use my own name. From the first time I learned of the name Ayana (pronounced eye-on-na), I instantly loved it. It's a native-american name that means 'blessed'. I have a deep connection with Native American history and culture. Maybe because some of my roots include Choctaw, Cherokee, & Seminole. So I immediately knew this was the name I wanted. Another photographer already had the same name...so I compromised and added the number 3...which is for my 3 children. So there you have it. : )
* M Y L I F E
"Think positively and masterfully, with confidence and faith, and life becomes more secure, more fraught with action, richer in achievement and experience".
I'm a California native...born and raised; but have called Chattanooga, TN my home for the last thirty years. I'm a city girl but I love the country. Considering my roots are from the south, Chattanooga is a perfect fit for me. I love living in this beautiful and scenic southern city that I consider to have it all. I've been married to my husband John for twenty seven (looooong ; ) years now. We have been blessed with three beautiful children...Christopher, Sabrina, & Alyssa; and four precious granddaughters...Kayla (10), Chloe (6), Caitlin (5), & Aubrey (4). We are expecting our first grandson in May, 2014...Landon Elijah! :) They are my greatest blessings and inspiration. When I'm not taking photographs, I enjoy riding my bike, scrapbooking, and spending time with my family... including my english bulldog Louie. :D
My career path has traveled many roads. I studied children's literature, early childhood development, marketing, cake decorating, floral design, among many other things; and then...I discovered my youngest daughter was a gymnast. So most of my time was pretty much occupied for thirteen years traveling all over the country with her. My two older children were actively involved in soccer, marching band, dance and clogging. So while I had every desire to be a career 'woman'...instead I became a career 'mom'. Or should I say 'gym mom', 'soccer mom', 'band mom', & 'dance mom'. During the last three years of my daughter's gymnastics career, I went back to school and completed an Associates in Management/Supervisory development. I then took an assistant management position. Wasn't for me. I took several administrative positions. Wasn't for me. During this time I was re-developing (pun intended) my love for photography. The more I was disheartened by numerous jobs I felt were steering me in the wrong direction, photography seemed like the rightful and obvious choice...
* M Y P H O T O G R A P H Y
"It's one thing to make a picture of what a person looks like...it's another thing to make a portrait of who they are".
During my first year of high school I took a photography class. The first photo I developed in a dark room was from a cardboard pinhole camera I made during the class. It fascinated me that I actually produced a real photo from a little cardboard box...that I made myself. From there I was hooked. One of the first cameras I used was an old 110 with a disposable flash that belonged to my father. I vividly remember him taking a lot of pictures with it during my childhood. I still have the camera today and with it the memory of my father who passed away in 1982. I like to believe I got my love of photography from him.
I believe the way to truly master the art of photography is by shooting photos...a lot! One of the many things I learned during several photography classes at Chattanooga State. I am constantly learning and striving to continue in that direction. My experience has led me to understand the complexity of photography...but also the sheer beauty of it. The beauty of capturing life in a photographic image from a moment in time that produces a memory kept for a lifetime. This is where I am most content...when I can create that momentous memory in a photograph for someone else. My heart led me in a direction dear to my heart in 2012. I got involved with the Make-A-Wish Foundation back in 2000 as a 'wish granter' volunteer. Now I have the privilege to continue giving to these brave and magnificent children and their families by sharing my gift of photography with them thru the Make-A-Wish Foundation East Tennessee.
I am a bit of a perfectionist when it comes to my images. I spend an ample amount of time on editing. I notice every little flaw, imperfection, or background distraction. So rest assured... your images are always edited with much love and attention to detail. So my journey begins as I commit full time to my career as a photographer. My goal is to capture your special 'life' moments...one image at a time...and make them the best I possibly can through my photographic imagery. For those of you I have already had the pleasure of doing this for...I thank you. For those of you who want to entrust me to capture your life moments...thank you in advance and know the pleasure will be all mine. I feel completely blessed to have the opportunity to do something in my life that is so true to my heart...photography.
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