Spare me the obligatory remarks about how long it’s been since my last post and how little attention I’ve paid to my blog since, well, like, 2016… I need to talk to you about something big. Really big. Life-changing—for me, at least.
After nine deeply fulfilling years as a professional photographer in Philadelphia, PA, I’m proud (and also terrified and very sad) to announce that Matthew J Photography will be leaving Philadelphia at the end of October and heading to Berkeley, California.
On the business end, I won’t be taking on new clients in Philadelphia beyond that point. I am planning to return at least once a year and will make myself available during those occasions. So, keep in touch. Or just follow along here (instagram, facebook, twitter). I’ll announce the dates well in advance. (While I will be a Berkeley, CA, photographer as of November, I am available for hire globally before and after the move.)
Personally—here comes the sappy part—I’m heartbroken to be leaving everyone and -thing that comprised my experience here. Well, okay, I’m taking the best parts with me (my wife, our kids, and my camera gear,) but it is devastating to think of how all the people, places, and things that have filled my days with such life for the last nine years will no longer be a part of my everyday.
At the forefront of all these emotions is an immense feeling of gratitude. I’m grateful purely for the ability and the opportunity to work as a professional photographer in a city that supports the arts as vibrantly as Philly does. Every experience I’ve been lucky enough to capture has only deepened that appreciation. I’m even grateful for the moments I’ve stumbled, and the clients who gave me the leeway to be able to do it and learn from it. It’s here that I started my journey, honed my style, built my brand, and ultimately decided to take a leap of faith to continue growing.
I hope to turn this blog into a journal of my professional and personal endeavors (for reals this time). So, consider this the first entry. With words and pictures, I’ll be describing the slow shift west and beyond. (We’re a big family. There’s a lot to pack.) Sitting two months out from our departure, I can tell you I’m filled with a whole new sense of urgency, and not just about the practical stuff, but the places we want to see and the things we want to do, probably for the last time in a long time.
Bear with me if these posts aren’t as regular as I intend. I imagine things are going to get crazy soon, and certainly once we hit the road. With three young kids, a cross-country trip with almost all of your belongings in tow feels like a space expedition. But, I’m eager to explore not just what we’re leaving behind but what our next chapter could look like.
I look forward to continuing my photography career in Berkeley, CA with a concentration on commercial, corporate, editorial, wedding, event, and portrait photography and videography.
I look forward to all who continue to follow my journey and promise to share my experience with the same honesty, humility, creativity, and care that I put into my photography.