I shot my first film at age eleven with my father’s 8mm camera. I always wanted to make films and I’ve always loved Documentary Films. In college (1983) I saw the movie Koyaanisqatsi and I signed up for film course immediately.
I graduated from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee with a degree in Broadcasting in 1990. In school I learned how to combine technologies to make art. I learned the technical side, how to hook up the wires and set up the gear to get the best raw material. I learned how to bring it back to the lab and turn it into something people want to see.
After college I went into advertising. I had a good career working for agencies and left in 1997 to work for myself creating websites. I moved to Denver and started SpireMedia. In 2002 I sold it to my partner and went traveling with a video camera.
I made some short films and one got into the South by Southwest Film Festival. I discovered my next career, film making. I also met my future wife Rachel. When I told her I wanted to shoot short documentary films of weddings she said “hell ya!”. We started shooting weddings in Denver.
In 2004 I moved to Mexico and started PlayaWeddings. Rachel has joined me, we got married. We continue to document weddings in one of the most beautiful places on earth. Weddings are amazing stories each and every time. We never get tired of capturing that story, the personalities and bringing it together in the editing room.
I am a Nebraskan native. My father, a historian and English professor, gave me the gift of poetry (musical, visual, textual, and otherwise) and taught me life is always beautiful if you look at it through that lens. My mother is a first class creative appreciator and a risk-taker; she gave me my bravery.
I graduated from Harvard University with a BA in English in 1997, and from the University of Denver with an MA in Video Production in 2009. My personal work as a documentarian revolves around the moment when memory becomes story, catching serendipityon film, and finding the transcendent in the strange and small.
I came to the photographic arts through theater, when I decided I’d rather be behind the camera rather than in front of it (most of the time). In 2004, my documentary Centripetal Visions was shown at the South by Southwest Film Festival, a big honor in the film world. Paul was there too, and we remember seeing each other there in the filmmaker’s lounge. But we hadn’t met yet….
I fell in love with Paul at a Mexican restaurant in Denver in May of 2004, though he didn’t know it at the time. That summer we learned how to make beautiful, inspired videos together. Three years later, I left my life in Denver in a blaze of romantic glory to move to Mexico, marry Paul, and be his lifetime media naranja–the other half of the orange, as they say here! I am so blessed to have the opportunity to join the love of my life in this heart-centered work, making awesome films in an incredible place with an a-m-a-z-i-n-g person!
I love seeing people at their happiest. Everything is beautiful and blessed at those moments, and that’s why I love shooting weddings. Portraits are lots of fun too! After your wedding, come on an adventure with me to trash the dress!!!