When Corey Martin moved back to Denver four years ago, he never thought he would become a photographer. “I had no idea what my passion was and my purpose was unclear,” he says. “I worked as a special education assistant for Skinner Middle School and was sleeping on my best friend’s futon in a one bedroom apartment in Cap Hill. There was so much I wanted from life but the path was narrow and I had no real money to do anything more than what I was doing at the time.”
Speaking with his close friend and mentor, Corey shared his frustrations and long term goals. He wanted roots in Denver where his family could come visit and feel at home. He wanted a sense of happiness, joy and success in a place that has always welcomed him with open arms. He wanted to do something that was challenging, yet enjoyable and fulfilling.
During this time, he had fallen in love with Colorado all over again and was taking creative and fun photos on his Samsung Galaxy S7. Strangers, close friends, and other artists were beginning to praise and compliment photos and he was inspired to do more. His same mentor-friend asked about his end goal and the purpose behind his photos.
“‘Who is your audience?’ my friend asked. I had no true vision, but I knew that I simply wanted to share the beauty and essence of love within everything I was experiencing at that time of life.”
The problem was that the device Corey was utilizing did not enable him to take the creative shots he envisioned. His friend made him a proposition to sell his nearly new Sony A65, but he didn’t want monetary compensation. In return, Corey promised to pay him back by finding his purpose in shooting beyond merely making money. His friend said that money would come on its own, which Corey thought was insane at the time, yet he agreed.
Corey watched hours of YouTube videos and tutorials, then reached out to countless artists to learn various techniques. Once Corey finally eliminated the idea of taking photos for money and decided to shoot for the sheer joy of it, the anxiety of money began to shift.
Corey began that next summer shooting his first wedding, which was such a humbling and joyous occasion. Since then he’s been asked to shoot concert events, music festivals, senior pictures, a fashion show and more. All have been such incredible experiences that he would have never imagined.
“I love the art and craft of photography so much, and I feel such an overwhelming feeling of connectedness and originality when I’m behind the lens,” Corey Says. “I’m never gonna stop learning more about the craft that provides me with not only financial gains, but allows me to experience the world on another level of which I’m so thrilled to share with the world.”
Follow Corey at @malevuephotography and #LifeThroughTheLens