We had the good fortune of connecting with Shari Pederson and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Shari, we’d love to hear about how you approach risk and risk-taking
Life is all about risks and I have taken several high risks in which some payed off and some, well, didn’t….yet :). Whether a risk payed off or not though doesn’t mean that there weren’t lessons to be learned. I took a risk leaving a toxic marriage and became a single mom and then took a huge risk in moving to Colorado (from ND) not knowing anyone. It felt right and I thought/hoped that it would allow me to provide better for my kids. I absolutely love Colorado and exploring it comes with it’s own risks. I had to manage fear of wildlife (we had nothing to be afraid of in ND lol) and learn how to navigate the wilderness. After my kids were all grown and gone, I took the opportunity to jump from a software career to starting a travel photography business.
Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
I went to college as a single mom and completed my degree in software development. I then worked in software for 30 years wearing many different hats (developer, business analyst, tester, project lead, team lead and scrummaster). After my kids were grown and gone, I started thinking about what I wanted to do at this point in my own lifecycle. The more I traveled and explored the back country, the more I wanted to share the incredible beauty that I was finding with others. I started working on elevating my photography and then made the jump to start up my photography business. I have learned self confidence, reflection and self inquiry to determine my next steps. Coming out of my extreme social awkwardness and finding my self worth has been a really (really) long road but I now love meeting new people and no longer fear it lol. In my photography, I love finding hidden gems and going into areas that are not easily accessed. I also love finding a different take on things that are common to find the uniqueness in them.
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
Since I live in the Denver area we have everything and anything that my friend would like to do. I would take them hiking to an alpine lake probably in RMNP (or snowshoeing or skiing if it’s winter), biking (any of our many local trails), a nice meal (probably downtown Denver or the Highlands), check out a small cute mountain town such as Breckenridge or Ouray. Possibly go to Moab and explore that area.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
My shout out is to my amazing friends that have encouraged me in my photography and other amazing friends that have invited me on absolutely incredible trips both near and far. The Colorado Mountain Club for it’s educational programs and friendships.