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Daily Inspiration: Meet Leta Harrison

Today we’d like to introduce you to Leta Harrison.

Hi Leta, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
I feel like we all have stories that are very complex and each moment makes us who we are.

My story is that I am so many different things but almost popularly known as mom or in this case a photographer. I got started in photography when I was living in Washington DC around 2017. I always had an affinity for art and thought that maybe one day I would be a thriving artist. This dream never stopped it just changed once I became a mom. My health took a drastic turn in 2017 and I had to abruptly quit working but was still doing photography. During this time, I worked for a Studio Collective (shout out to my friend and mentor Jarrett Hendrix at Creative Hands) and freelanced every and anything that I could. I loved Photography and still love it but at the time, I was not financially well to continue to pursue Photography full-time and raise a family so I chose to prioritize working to take care of my family.

I moved to Austin, Texas in 2019 to pursue that family-oriented goal. I was relatively new and was unsure of how to navigate the Austin culture and at the time, my ex and I had dissolved our relationship. I had some choices to make where I would either return back to Washington DC or stay in Austin and I decided to stay in Austin. Not long after separating, I decided that it would be a great idea to learn self-defense as a single woman living in Austin and acquired a gun instructor. My now friend Ralph Blue was the person who changed my photography profession. I took a couple of classes from him and saw that he needed some assistance with content and offered my photography services in exchange for classes. I made him a deal that if he did not like my photos that we would just continue to focus on training. Not only did he end up loving my photos, but he ended up hiring me as his range photographer. From that interaction, I was able to build my network of photographers and my work has expanded to photojournalism, wedding photography, event photography, and portrait work. It is my absolute dream to transition from freelance to full-time contracting work for local and national publications.

I’ve had my struggles but no longer live in the space of identifying how hard things can be, my only desire is to continue to move forward.

Would you say it’s been a smooth road, and if not what are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced along the way?
I am a firm believer that struggles only exist as a resistance to who we really are. I have been fighting who I was because I had always struggled with self-doubt, self-loathing and I have always been my biggest critic. These flaws landed me in some very difficult situations.

I choose not to reflect on being a single mother or being a survivor of abuse because these instances have only made me appreciate myself so much more. The only fear that I have is that I won’t be able to take care of my children, but outside of that I have become fearless.

Thanks for sharing that. So, maybe next you can tell us a bit more about your work?
I am a photographer. Right now, I’m freelancing so that means that I do a collective bit of everything. I’m most known for my creative storytelling and how I am able to capture life. I am most proud of the fact that my children are able to witness their mother doing something she loves. I haven’t figured out what sets me apart from other people because I just see myself as a vessel of communication for the people.

Contact Info:

Image Credits
Black-and-white portrait of myself was created by Jarrett Hendrix

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