Life is composed of so many creative elements that come together to create the colorful world we know and love. One of those elements that is near to my heart is photography. Recently I’ve been captivated by Chris de Bode’s work and the way he shares stories. It’s all about capturing a moment that holds immense beauty that you can then carry with you moving forward.
Today I had the pleasure of interviewing Judi Honiker, a 64-year-old photographer located in Clearwater, Florida. While working as a Sales & Marketing Assistant, she absolutely loves taking photographs in her spare time that exemplify the beauty that surrounds each of us. Judi has a creative eye that transports you directly into her beautiful photographs, and I’m so happy I was able to chat with her about how she captures life’s lovely moments.
What inspired you to start taking photos? Tell me about your first introduction.
I actually never had a desire to take photos, but in 2001, I was laid off from an administrative assistant position. After meeting with a career counselor at Worknet Pinellas, I was informed that they didn’t have any positions available in that field and suggested furthering my education doing something else. I’m not sure why, but said, “I think I’d like to try Photography.” So I enrolled in the Commercial Photography Program at PTEC (Pinellas Technical Education Center).
Was there a defining moment where you knew photography was going to be a major part of your life?
Probably when I was in my photography class. I was also in a writer’s group (PINAWOR: Pinellas Author’s & Writer’s Organization). It was there where I discovered my love for poetry, primarily haiku. I found merging the two together very satisfying.
What do you look for when trying to capture a moment?
I open myself up to all options of creativity; color, texture, lighting-all come into play during the process. Haiku Photography
What is your personal definition of photography?
It most definitely is capturing a moment that evokes emotion and many times creates a memory. The image initially starts out with how it makes me feel, but when others have a reaction, well that’s just an added bonus.
Do you specialize in a certain type of photography or do you enjoy/practice all areas? (Landscape, portrait, fashion, etc.)
Although, I have studied all genres of photography, I find landscape/nature photography most rewarding.
In your opinion, what makes a moment beautiful? Both on the camera and off the camera?
I would say for me what makes a beautiful moment is being fully present. Sometimes as a photographer wanting to get that “best shot” one sacrifices spending time with others. There has to be a fine line with being committed to the craft, but not being too involved as to ignore what is happening in the moment. That being said, it may be a unique gift to share the special moments that you created.
Is there any simple thing/action that you always make sure to do in your everyday routine that makes you smile? Listen to music, draw, meditate, etc.
Music is very important to me and a great part of my day. Every morning before going to work, I walk for about 20 minutes & listen to Country Music. Believe it or not, I never listened to Country Music until I started writing poetry and found it to be very poetic. I like to use an example of a Wynnona Judd song, “Flies On The Butter (You Can’t Go Home Again”) I just loved the imagery, “Old tin roof, leaves in the gutter A hole in the screen door big as your fist, and flies on the butter.” I also listen to Christian Music (Joy FM) at work and in the car, which I find very calming. When I ride my bike I go back to Country Music and I sometimes even borrow a word or two when writing haiku. It really does inspire me! That for me is when and where I feel most creative, riding my bike, being out in nature, listening to Country Music. It’s the best! It makes me smile.
Photo Credit: Taken myself