A providential conspiracy seems to have been at work in the convergence of friends and events that led him to photography, and to the college in Kentucky where he wound up studying photography and came to love making pictures.
At the end of the 1970’s, Michael didn’t plan to be doing photography for a living; in fact, he had no plan. He worked as a janitor, a dishwasher, a laborer, a darkroom technician and eventually as a photographer’s assistant (although Michael doesn’t think he was very helpful). All the while he kept making pictures. In 1985, Michael published his first book of photographs and writing entitledHeads Bowed Eyes Closed, No One Looking Around.
A girl named Marilyn, who he had taken a portrait of, wrote him from New York where she was living at the time — and before long they got married. With not much of a clue but little to lose and a wife not afraid, Michael quit his real job in 1987 to freelance as a photographer. He feels very fortunate to have enjoyed “some wonderful opportunities for making pictures, and met a bunch of wonderful people in the process.”