Many people dream about their future at an early age and seem to keep the same dream alive in their minds until they make it come true after they have worked hard enough. I am not one of those people; I have had so many different dreams and visions for my future that sometimes I don’t even know how to start working towards something. Even though my dreams changed, they were always on a common path. When I was younger I wanted to be a Veterinarian, probably because I was surrounded by many different pets at home; like dogs, cats, fish, rabbits, chicks, turtles, birds, and gerbils. In middle school, my teacher Ms. Julie had a Chinchilla, and I was the one who stayed after school feeding it, and helping him with his dust baths. In High School, I was the Marine Science class photographer when we went on trips to Cherry Grove in Fire Island, Long Island Sound Fishing trips, Ponquogue Beach in Hampton Bays, Shelter Island, etc. Also I took a lot of stray dogs, cats, and turtles home. My mother always knew she had to have Animal Control or the Animal Shelter on speed dial. The biggest scare for my mother was finding two garden snakes I had hidden in a box under my bed. I always wanted to try and save animals and hug them all. I eventually grew an interest in photography and it became my new passion. I wanted to capture everything it didn’t matter how pointless it was to other people, I felt like it was an amazing photograph. As we all have different interests, it can be very hard for people to like your work because they might not understand what you feel or think. But going back to my dream in life, as much as I grew to love another passion in my life, I still was able to keep the love for animals very close to me. Volunteering at the Animal Shelter, and at a small Wildlife Refugee in Quogue, NY, which gave me a new perspective in life and changed my mentality on Animals in a good way. It made me appreciate them more and more, I started watching Documentaries like Into the Wild with Jack Hannah, Into the Pride with Dave Salmoni, Mireya Mayor going to Madagascar to document a new species of Lemurs, Blackfish, TV shows like Tanked, Whale Wars, and more, I even watch their interviews on talk shows where they bring animals out to educate the viewers.  So I ask myself now, how can I make both dreams come true for me? I know I can photograph animals in their habitat, and showcase their beauty to the world. I would love to work for National Geographic and go all over the world to photograph animals from far away so they do not get disturbed, and bring more awareness about their living conditions to mankind. As I have a lot of training to do, to be at the same caliber of those professional photographers, I think that practice is the only option right now. So here are some photographs of Gorillas that I captured when I went to Tampa, Florida. Enjoy and start working towards your dream!

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