Dane Richards, an interview with my NWA senior

Anyone who follows Linda Richards Photography on Facebook realizes that this entire month I’ve been featuring a different graduating senior who chose me as their senior portrait photographer. This week, it’s been fun to feature my own Northwest Arkansas graduate: my son, Dane.

My clients over the years have often met Dane as he’s worked as my photography assistant. He’s done everything from carrying equipment, helping me with lights, and even corralling a client’s dogs during a photoshoot where the furry companions were included.

I can’t tell you how proud my husband and I are of Dane and what he has planned for his future. I sat down with him recently to ask his insights into both his time as my assistant and about his future.

Dane graduates this week from Bentonville High School. He is headed to Hendrix College in Conway where he will study pre-medicine.

“I’m looking forward to the study environment and meeting new people,” Dane said about what he’s looking forward to most when he heads to college this fall, adding that he’s a little apprehensive about how difficult the school will be, according to its reputation.

Dane is used to tough curriculum, however. He is graduating with High Honors and recognized for Distinguished ACT from BHS’ Ignite Health Sciences program, which has given him hands-on training and learning in a real medical environment. He’s already earned his certification for Phlebotomy, which means he can already get a job in that field right out of high school.

I, of course, asked Dane what he would miss when he went away to college.

“I’m going to miss my family, job, and friends from Ignite the most when I leave NWA,” he said.

As you can see, I also took his senior portraits. I asked him if it was a little strange being in front of the camera for a change.

“It wasn’t strange to be the subject, I’m used to getting my picture taken and I enjoy it,” he said.

He has this advice for those who are a bit nervous about getting their pictures taken:

“Try and make the photoshoot fun. Find ways to laugh and bring a friend along if that will help the person who may be apprehensive about getting their photo taken,” Dane said. “Be yourself and don’t take it so seriously.”

My son has some wise words! I’m not surprised, though, because Dane is introverted and very intelligent. He’s driven, disciplined and harder on himself than anyone could be. He’s wanted to be a cardio-thoracic surgeon since he was in 8th grade. He’s incredibly health conscious as he works out, eats healthy and takes care of his appearance. He loves to read about human nature, successful people, how to improve himself. He also mixes it up by reading fiction for fun. He is currently reading the Stormlight Archive by Brandon Sanderson.

He also loves to teach himself new things, including teaching himself to play the guitar, origami, and most recently he is obsessed with Fortnite, the latest video game craze. He’s tried various sports over the years including tennis and bowling (he’s been on the BHS bowling team all four years of high school).  Besides working with me, he also works for his uncle at Northwest Motorsports.

As you can see, I’m quite proud of my son! Here’s a heartfelt congratulations to him and all of the Class of 2018.

Are you needing senior headshots soon? The summer between your junior and senior year is the perfect time. Give me a call!