Photography. Web Design. Blogging. Social Media Coordinator.

Photo courtesy of C. Tundo Photography
Photo courtesy of C. Tundo Photography

Hi. I’m Teresa. Thanks for coming to my page. So, you probably want to know why you should use TCJ Design for your multimedia needs. Let me share a bit about how I went from full-time teacher to starting TCJ Design.

After being in the high school and college classroom since 1999, I’ve found myself being pulled away from education. It’s not totally by choice; sometimes life is a bit of give and take. Right now, it’s my time to give.

I’m giving to this crazy group: my family.

In 2015, after battling infertility and overcoming it for munchkins 1 and 2, I found myself pregnant for a third time—miraculously without the help of drugs, surgeries, and needles. Within weeks of finding out about munchkin #3, my husband landed his dream job. My husband’s job is demanding; he works unpredictable hours seven days a week. Since we don’t live near immediate family, I learned quickly that it was getting harder and harder for me to balance my many hats at school— classroom teacher, curriculum writer, and director of instructional technology— with my many hats at home—wife, mom, dog mom, friend, daughter … well, you get the gist. There definitely was not time left for the people and things I love.

So I started dreaming and thinking about things I love: spending time with my family, hiking, exploring little towns, capturing pictures of my kiddos growing, staying in touch with family and friends, reading, sewing, and learning.

Photo courtesy of C. Tundo Photography

As most people who have worked with me know, I’m a perfectionist and I can handle a large work load and make it look easy, balancing it with my home life. So, the realization this year that I couldn’t balance the demands of my life rocked me. My identity has always been tied to teaching; so what would life be like if I wasn’t in the classroom?

I pondered other things I love and that I am good at. I have loved photography and perfecting my techniques. I studied journalism in college, so my initial photography experiences were tied to photos that could complement my stories. Digital photography was still expensive when I was in college, so I took a photography class using slide film that allowed me to scan slides and manipulate images in Photoshop. I spent the summer after graduation taking a black and white photography, playing in the dark room. In my first teaching job, I spent the year once again hiding in a dark room showing students everything I learned.

My loves, in opening day attire. We're pretty serious Cardinals baseball fans.
My loves, in opening day attire. We’re pretty serious Cardinals baseball fans.

For some reason, it took me a while to make the jump to taking digital pictures in manual mode. Now that I have kids, I’ve been obsessed with photography. I have always loved writing, and pictures are still a natural part of my blogging and writing.

As the “techy teacher” at school (see my educational consulting website The Techy Teacher), I’ve also learned an immense amount about using technology. Since most of my knowledge was hands-on, I decided to back it up by getting a master’s of education in instructional technology, where I learned more about web design, multimedia, and videography. All of these skills coupled with my love for photography and background in journalism is what has brought me to starting TCJ Design. I wanted to do what I love in a more flexible work environment.

Flash forward a year, and here I am in the summer of 2017 heading back into the full-time classroom. I still love what I get to do with TCJ Design, but soon I’ll be a single parent for 16 months and I’ll be back in the full-time classroom at a new school. So…for a bit, my photography sessions are going to be pretty limited! I’ll only be taking 2-3 clients each month, and I’ll be trying to limit them to the same weekend. If you want to book, please e-mail me to see my availability at teresa@tcjdesign.com.

TCJ Design offers a variety of unique services:

  • lifestyle photography (focusing on children, family, maternity, newborn, and senior portraits…but I’m open to anything!)
  • web design with the ability to help you maintain a social media presence through blogging and maintaining social media sites (focusing on small businesses and non-profits)
  • small videography projects (focused on telling a story in a digital format)

I live in Southern Maryland, and I would love to serve you.

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