I told my parents as a very small child that I wanted to grow up to be a Native American and live off the land, because I loved being outside (silly, right?…I’m a millennial and grew up watching Pocahontas if that helps.) However, my love for the outdoors has only grown since then.
I started photographing weddings when I was 16, but when I told my parents I wanted to pursue a career in Journalism and/or Photography specifically, I was told I’d never make a dollar, and that I needed to go to school for something else.
I ended up selling all my camera gear and graduating with two Business Bachelors degrees, Marketing and Business Management. Of course, I was the girl with tattoos and vibrantly dyed hair in my suit and tie business classes being told by my professors that if I didn’t conform and act “normal,” I’d never be successful.
In 2013 I took my graduation money and blew it on a solo motorcycle trip from Texas to Baja where I spent 4 days partying on a beach in Mexico with a bunch of likeminded motorcycle enthusiasts. That trip changed my entire life. I reinvested in camera gear and basically started my life over. I started doing things for me.
I worked in Harley-Davidson Dealerships off and on for the past ten years, making my way from a part time Motorclothes Associate all the way up to a Marketing Director for Five Dealerships. I did find a way to be successful. Maybe not in the way that my professors thought I would be. But I did it. However, after that Baja trip in 2013, I knew I wasn’t supposed to have a “real” job. I was too creative, I needed to find a way to put those abilities I had to use, and to live the life I wanted to live.
So, in 2014 I left Texas and moved around the country quite a few times over the last 5 years. (Arizona, Oklahoma, back to Texas, Northern California, and Colorado to be exact.) My pursuit to figure out a way to work in the motorcycle and/or lifestyle/adventure-focused industries had began.
From 2014 – present day, I’ve worked “odd” jobs, including bartending and driving for Lyft and Uber at times to pay the bills. I’ve also worked on mobile marketing tours for major brands and agencies’ event activations, and I’ve been a social media consultant and manager for different companies and events. My photographs have graced the pages of HOG Magazine, Motorcyclist Online, and many other client social media channels. What’s even more rad, is I’ve had my photo taken and published in major brands product catalogs and marketing assets.
As I’ve worked my way through the trenches and learned a thing or two about working for yourself, or trying. I’ve gone back and forth with full-time jobs a few times, in attempts to “fitting in” in the “real world.” But those jobs never spoke to me or allowed me to be creative, or to feel valued. I tried, and I figured out that those jobs just weren’t for me. I had a purpose outside of being a number on a payroll sheet that was sucking the life out of me day by day.
Freelancing as a female in a male-dominated industry is NO easy task. It has been the biggest roller coaster of my life. I think even more gnarly than just trying to figure myself out as an angsty teenager, if we’re going to be honest here. However, making a difference in the motorcycling world, as well as the travel and adventure world in general, has always been a passion of mine. And, I’m not going anywhere, anytime soon. I’m here to stay. Because this is what I love, and what I’ll continue to pour my heart and soul into.
And here we are. The Ride to Food platform was created so that I could show you the things I’ve learned over time, the places you need to experience for yourself, and maybe even inspire you to go against the grain in whatever fashion that entails.
I wanted to break stereotypes of women and those who are a little different. I wanted to show that we are all capable of doing things just as well as the next person.
I created this platform because it’s something I wanted to have, and I knew others would find a use for it too.
Life has come full circle, I suppose. Here I am with my own photojournalism outlet, something I was told would never work out. I guess those business degrees paid off in ways my professors didn’t expect. Because I’ve been able to combine all of these skills together to do something rad as f*ck!
If you’ve gotten here because you have followed me on my personal social channels over the years, thank you for following me this far, it really means a lot. If you’re new, and looking for some help to push your limits, or find confidence in whatever shape or form that entails, I’m stoked you’re here. I wanted to create something real and build a community out of it, and without you, this wouldn’t even be possible.