I started competing because I thought I was a pretty good pet photographer. Competition pointed out my flaws. It's humbling. I managed one significant award from the Professional Photographers of America in 2016, my first year competing, then had three flops in that same case of four images. But if you keep at it, you start to learn what makes a compelling image. The next year I earned a bronze medal in that same organization and in 2020, I earned a gold medal along with ranking in a number of other competitions.