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Check Out George Frey’s Story

Today we’d like to introduce you to George Frey.

Hi George, thanks for sharing your story with us. To start, maybe you can tell our readers some of your backstory.
I was born in Vermont but grew up around the country. Including in Eugene, Oregon, Columbia, MO and St. Louis. Since then, I have also lived in New York and will be heading to Singapore for an exchange. For most of my childhood, I felt disconnected from reality. The world rushed around me. To describe it best would be to say that I was in a metaphorical box, yet I could stare outward into the world through the distorted glass. I felt like an animal in a cage, unable to move and sensitive to every single occurrence around me. It felt like I was simultaneously looking on at the world, and they were looking right back. To an extent, I still feel this way; out of control and confused. Growing up, I always felt self-conscious. I was never ‌as smart, talented, or good-looking as the other kids. I was in the middle, not popular, not an outcast, just existing in this state of social purgatory. I felt utterly average, and when you feel ‌you have little value, you inherit intense loneliness. Which remains with you throughout your life. I did not know who I was, and I still don’t. Yet, with street photography, people aren’t putting up a front. Human beings tend to just be themselves when they know they aren’t performing for others, and that helps erode social barriers. Today, I am on a quest to erode those barriers for not just myself, but for others that may feel what I feel. I do that via pictures, and truly I wouldn’t do anything else.

Alright, so let’s dig a little deeper into the story – has it been an easy path overall and if not, what were the challenges you’ve had to overcome?
When I was a toddler, I was diagnosed with Aspergers, now known as Autism Spectrum Disorder. I truthfully hate the term ‘disorder,’ because there is nothing wrong with me and how I think, but as a child, knowing that I had ASD gave me an intense feeling of isolation. As I aged, I have built a life for myself while having ASD. There is, however, still this bizarre feeling of isolation, but the photography I create helps mitigate those feelings for me.

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
I’m a photographer, both working in journalism and the art world. I like to think of myself as no different from anyone else, yet I feel like photography is a gift that I want to take advantage of as much as possible.

Do you have any advice for those looking to network or find a mentor?
Find the person who makes you the happiest. Not your spouse or your friends, but a fellow creator in your field. Look at them, look at how they live and navigate their career. If you can find someone truly passionate about what they do, then they will be more inclined to give you advice that truly works. Now, in saying this, don’t attempt to emulate the person fully. Instead, apply their line of thinking to your own life, test it out, and mold it accordingly. Find out who you are, but also allow others to help you along that journey.

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Image Credits
George Whit Frey

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