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Art & Life with Shannon Hammond

Today we’d like to introduce you to Shannon Hammond.

Shannon, please kick things off for us by telling us about yourself and your journey so far.
I didn’t realize that I had a creative side until I was in my 30s. I had worked for years as an IT consultant and project manager and didn’t imagine that I would ever do anything else until I pressed pause on that career to move abroad with my husband. I bought my first camera shortly after we arrived in Italy. It was an entry level DSLR with a kit lens, and the first time I used it was on a week-long trip to Athens and Santorini. I fell in love. I couldn’t stop taking photos (the scenery certainly didn’t hurt). That camera and that trip awoke a creative side in me that was so dormant, I wasn’t sure it actually existed.

We spent the next two years traveling non-stop, and I started seeing the world differently. Developing a love for photography fundamentally changed the way I traveled and experienced different cultures, something that I am extremely grateful for.

Fast forward ten years and my passion for photography is stronger than ever. My focus had primarily been travel and landscape photography, as we have been fortunate to live abroad for half of our married life, but with the addition of our daughter to the family, I developed an interest in lifestyle and portrait photography. Our move to San Diego has really allowed me to grow that aspect of my business.

Can you give our readers some background on your art?
I’m a photographer. I used to think that meant that I just took photos, but I now realize that it so much more than that.

When it comes to my travel photography, I want my images to be an inspiration to others to explore more, to embrace different cultures, and to travel beyond the guidebook.

As for my portrait photography, I want the images to be more than just a pretty picture; they should be evocative of a time and a place. In this respect, I consider myself more of a documentarian than a photographer.

And finally, for my lifestyle work, I want that to be fun. I want to have fun planning it, fun shooting it, and fun sharing it. And I want it to bring pleasure to the people who consume those images.

What would you recommend to an artist new to the city, or to art, in terms of meeting and connecting with other artists and creatives?
I have found Instagram to be a great place to connect with the creative community. If you find someone with whom you share an appreciation for a similar aesthetic, it gives you a lovely foundation from which to build a friendship. I have used Instagram to connect with fellow photographers, but also with moms, travelers, stylists, and shop owners, and many of these people have become my friends in real life. I find the community to be a positive place where I can turn to for both inspiration and support.

What’s the best way for someone to check out your work and provide support?
I share a lot of my work travel and lifestyle work on Instagram, but the complete portfolio, including portraits, can be found on my website.

People can support me through following me on Instagram, purchasing a print via my website or by booking a portrait session with me.

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