25 Apr Profile: Aerial Photographer Follows Her Passion
Why am I so poor?
I will get to that later. First, I want to welcome you to my world of flying, photography, and golf!
I have been flying airplanes for thirty-two years, since my first husband left to pursue other interests in different women. At that juncture in my life, flying saved my life. I had a zoology degree and was a wildlife and underwater photographer, dreaming of someday being a park ranger in the Florida Keys.
One day, I decided to try my hand at aerial photography. I bought a Cessna 172 aircraft two months after getting a pilot’s license and a medium-format camera, called a Bronica. I became the only aerial photographer in Florida to shoot aerial photos on square-format film.
After a couple of years of playing around with this idea of aerial photography, building my ego back up with the “I’m an aerial photographer story,” but also needing to eat, I started a real aerial photography company with my second husband. During this time, golf became my distraction to the alcoholism in our home, and learning the game gave me a much needed escape. Fore! Look out, I’m taking up golf! At this point, golf saved my life.
Fast forward thirty-two years from when I first started flying: I now have a third husband and a sixteen- year-old son, who is also a golfer (he really didn’t have a choice), plus having a deeper commitment and understanding of a loving God. This is where God saved me from my destructive self. I started a business called In the Sand Golf (ITS Golf), which got started when I wanted to give my wonderful husband—also a great golfer—a unique golf gift he didn’t have and wouldn’t throw away (we re-gift or throw away many of the silly golf-related things our non-golfing family and friends give us).
During my many Florida monthly flights I started looking for sand traps shaped like the letters of the alphabet so that I could spell his name. I decided the letter B would be the hardest letter to find for his name, Bruce. Literally, seconds later, I spotted a B while flying over Bonita Springs. It was off to the links. I was on a mission, ready and determined to find R, U, C, and E!
After that, of course, all my friends wanted their names too. So, after a year and 400 hours I captured and recaptured the letters of the alphabet twice, once in lowercase and again in uppercase. I have not doctored the photos you are about to see, except to make the color of the grass greener and a more similar shade, since the courses have different types of grass, and a few have very little grass.
The F is the exception letter, printed backwards as a mirrored image to the actual shape of the sand trap (or “bunkers,” as my Scottish followers have pointed out!). I replaced many letters when I found some with more character (pardon the pun) or more unique surroundings.
Okay, so back to my original question of why am I so poor? The answer of course is because I like to play a lot of golf, which takes a lot of time and money, but it has made my life rich in so many other ways!