Eric White, 24, born and raised in rural upstate New York, now living in and working as a photographer in Brooklyn.

I was challenged as a kid to create my own fun, as in a rural setting, there aren’t “big city distractions” to occupy yourself with. I was just as happy to wander into the acres of woods behind my house and quietly observe the world I was surrounded by. It forced this “quick on my feet creativity” that I still use every day.

When my grandmother bought me a camera at 9 years old, that changed everything. Suddenly, I had a way to bring home the flowers and bugs and tree canopies through my lens. I could freeze the faces of my friends and family forever in my photo albums. I collected a menagerie of treasures shot by shot and could begin to form a visual vocabulary with light and form that I attribute much of my success to this day. I wish i still had that cheap plastic camera, there was something so magic about its lo-fi simplicity.