Patience is a virtue, but it's not easy.
National parks are normally a great place to see families from all around the world. When I arrived to South Carolina, the map showed a national park and I was curious because I grew up there and never heard of the park before.
When I arrived I quickly learned why I hadn't heard of the park. There were only a couple of cars in the parking lot and it was deep in a very wooded area. As I entered the park I learned it was essentailly a swamp. Still, it was interesting and I thought it would make a great background for an image to represent a southern state.
My gear was heavy, but I carried it through the swamp and found a spot I felt would be great for a photograph. All I needed was a family to show up and hopefully they would like the concept of the Future American President project and allow me to photograph them. I decided to wait and see if I'd get lucky. An hour later I started to second guess the decision to stay and wondered about this location. Not one person had passed by during my time there, and there was only one way into the swamp grounds.
I was fighting whether to stay or leave, then suddenly, I heard footsteps in the distance. As the person came into view I noticed it was just one person by himself. As he got closer, I saw it was a park ranger and he was excited to see me. I knew I had the wrong location when he said, "it's good to see someone today!" He told me not many people come to the park and decided to tell me everything he knew about it. An hour later he was still talking and not a soul had passed by.
I thanked him for his time and then picked up my gear and left the park. It wasn't the first time I tried to wait for an image, but it was the first time no one showed up. You won't always win, but when you do, it makes the winning so much sweeter.
I found the perfect subject in Lexington, South Carolina and I know this image will have a profound impact on this beautiful little girl and on children like her everywhere.
Always Dream Big