While working as a high school Spanish teacher in New Hampshire, I was recovering from a painful shoulder injury when a colleague suggested that I consider photography as a hobby. My first point-and-shoot camera had been stolen years earlier while getting on a bus in Guatemala. This time I invested in a new 35mm film camera (Minolta X-700) and began taking weekly classes with a local photographer.
Restored to good health, I was assigned to direct the school’s academic program in Segovia, Spain. While living and working there, I set up a darkroom where I painstakingly learned to develop black and white film and make my own prints.
In Segovia, friendships were made with local photographers who offered me advice and direction. I began a personal photography project in the local Roma or Gypsy enclave. The experience marks a watershed in my decision to become a photojournalist.
After four years in Spain, I decided to pursue a master’s degree in photography at Ohio University.
Since 1999, I have been a staff photographer at The Hartford Courant. Previously, I worked on the staff of the Concord Monitor in New Hampshire and El Universo in Guayaquil, Ecuador. In 2001, I took a leave of absence from the Courant to photograph baseball in Cuba.
My work has been published by other print and broadcast media including CNN, Fox CT, The New York Times and Vermont Public Radio.
Patrick can be reached at email@example.com.