Born in Connecticut.
Lived in the following places at one time or another (in roughly chronological order):
Moved to Toronto in 2003.
I was raised in a fairly rural suburb in Fairfield County, Connecticut. Very white collar, and very white. Many commuted to Bridgeport (home of PT Barnum, and one of the first municipalities to declare bankruptcy), many commuted to their executive positions at some multinational corporation's world headquarters, and some even commuted to New York City. (A friend's father awoke every morning at 4:30am to catch the train from Westport in time to get to his job on Wall St. I expect this was fairly common for the area.) If you remember the original Bewitched TV series, or seen Frankenheimer's masterpiece Seconds, it was that kind of an American Dream suburb, but quieter with bigger lots, more trees, narrower roads, and no downtown. There's a reason The Stepford Wives (the original) was filmed on a friend's street in an adjacent town — it's practically a documentary of the area, as is Ang Lee's The Ice Storm which could have been filmed nearby. That kind of place.
I spent a great deal of time walking the quiet streets. I don't think the town had a single sidewalk, which was fine because cars seldom passed except on the "busier" main road, which was never busy and had almost no foot traffic (because there was nowhere to walk to). I walked, at all times day or night, for hours at a time, through the loosely packed neighborhoods separated by narrow winding roads that passed through dense old forests crisscrossed by colonial stone walls and running brooks. I was fascinated by the houses I passed, each one a mystery, especially at night. (And no, I never peeked in the windows — I respect privacy.) These experiences would later prove decisive in my approach to photography.
But first I pursued other dreams. It had always been my lifelong dream to be a writer. But as I discovered much too late in my life, the dream was actually to have written, not to actually write. I might still one day write that novel I started, though: I think it'll only happen when the need to write it actually trumps the wish to have written it.
The other dream was to develop a theory and practice of computer art as visual music. I received my BA in computer art in a self-directed program of study from the unique Hampshire College, then pursued my MFA at CalArts in the experimental animation program. At the time, CalArts was the only art school that had any kind of courses, teachers and facilities for computer graphics and animation (from the art side of the aisle). (Just as an interesting sidenote, my MFA class was filled with incredible talent that included such luminaries as Stephen Hillenburg (creator of Spongebob), Mark Osborne (director of Kung Fu Panda), and Sheila Sofian (world-renowned documentary animator). It was a great couple of years there.)
From there I got a job in "the industry", working as a senior FX Animator/Technical Director on a variety of prominent productions such as Starship Troopers, The Matrix, & Minority Report. While working at Industrial Light & Magic I felt a compulsion to learn photography. I studied under Amy Kubes at UC Berkeley, and soon felt that I had finally found the medium that, visually, conveys the way I see the world.
Though I really liked living in California's Bay Area, it never felt like home: I missed the seasons; I missed winter (really!); and, most of all, I missed the quality of light on the eastern side of the continent. When an opportunity to work in Toronto came along I grabbed it: in addition to moving back east, moving to Canada had been a lifelong dream of mine, and I was very happy to become a Canadian citizen in 2012.
After several more years in "the industry", I decided it was time to move on and devote myself to my art(s): photography, visual music... and, maybe, one day, actually writing.
Self Portrait, Feb 11 2016