Who am I?
What is up guys! Welcome to my website and new blog! This is new to me, and I'm not quite sure 'how to blog' lol but here we go. My name is Kevin Eassa, and I've never quite known how to answer the question "Who am I?" because it is such a loaded question, and I don't identify myself by one thing or one characteristic. I guess I am many things... I am a photographer, filmmaker, time- lapse lover, traveler, teacher, entrepreneur, college drop out, and much more. Who knows lol. I'll give a little bit of a background of my story to help you guys understand my journey and what has gotten me to where I stand today, my thoughts may be jumbled, but it has been a wild ride, and I want you guys to know the full story...
When I was in college, I was studying towards completing a Finance degree at Towson University in Maryland, while also working full- time between 2 to 3 restaurants, and holding multiple positions in my fraternity, Delta Sigma Phi. For years at college if you asked me about photography I wouldn't have been able to tell you the first thing, it held no place in my head or my heart. Although around college is when I started to travel. My first trip outside of the country was to London, to visit my brother Dave who was studying abroad, then later to Mexico, then I found out about EF College Break, and this changed everything.
I booked a 7 country Europe road trip with EF College Break, this is where I met Bri, it was over Winter Break my Sophomore year of college. Bri and I have been together on and off for 5 years now, more on that later. But after this trip with EF, everything changed, and travel consumed my mind. All I wanted to do moving forward was to travel, and since I had been working at restaurants since I was 14 years old, I had plenty of money saved from my crazy work ethic, but also my very frugal spending habits. So that summer I booked a handful of trips with EF- Australia, New Zealand, Peru, and The Greek Islands, what a fucking summer. At this point still, didn't know the first thing about photography, filmmaking, or anything of the sort.
Fast forward to November following this crazy summer, I bought my first camera, a Sony a6000, after the recommendations of my cousin who is a wedding photographer. I was visiting Bri in Colorado the month prior to getting the camera, and I held her Nikon, it was wild, and totally captivated me. I thought it was so cool that from the click of a button you could freeze a moment in time and have it forever, I knew at that moment I wanted to get into photography. Although, the first time I really used the camera was in January a few months after getting it, Bri and I planned our first big trip to Asia. This was different in the sense it was just me and her, no tour companies, just us and the big wide world. We planned a 3 week trip going all over Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and South Korea. It was insane to say the least. I fell in love with taking photos, even though I didn't know what I was doing haha.
Slowly but surely I started to learn photography over the next year. At this point it puts me at December 2016, my senior year in college, I had been practicing photography for about 11 months. I HATED college, and knew it wasn't for me, and I knew that even though I was good at business and finance, I didn't want a career in the field. I also loved having freedom more than anything, and knew I didn't want to work for the man. At this point in December, I hadn't touched the world of filmmaking or making videos, just photos. And looking back... my photos sucked. They were cool, but man were they bad and the edits I did were horrendous, even though they started to take some traction on social media, mainly Instagram.
Long story short, I dropped out of college that December. My whole family was told "I'm just taking a semester off, then I'll go back." Everyone was told that lie, I even sometimes believed it. My mom and I were the only ones that knew I had no intentions of going back. I was 24 credits shy of a degree at a top university, all of my friends and family told me how stupid I was, how close I was, blah blah blah, I heard it all.
Even though I left, it wasn't to sit on the couch and watch Netflix. I knew, and told myself that I would stop at absolutely nothing to make my dreams a reality. Nothing would get in my way, and I would work as hard as humanly possible to make it happen. I left college in December, did a trip to Italy and Portugal and January, but other than that... it was time to work. Like I said, I worked full- time in college, but that's only about 40 hours. From the time I took my last final that December, until the day I quit all my restaurant jobs, I was an absolute work horse. I worked at Victoria Gastro Pub, Manor Hill Tavern, Barebones Grill & Brewery, and I took any photo or video job I could get my hands on. Side note, this was also when I slowly started to learn how to make videos. I left all the restaurants June 3rd, 2017. Between December and June, I worked 7 days a week, normally 12-18 hours a day. I worked doubles at the restaurants, my break was normally driving from one restaurant to another, while changing uniforms while driving on the highway. Some shifts started as early as 8am, and some shifts I worked as late as 2am. Not to mention I started to get some real estate photography jobs, but the only time I had to take and edit the photos were before my restaurant shifts. So I would wake up at 5-6am, drive to who knows where in Maryland, do the job then head to the restaurants. Oh and on the weekends you better believe I wasn't willing to sacrifice nights out with my friends, so Thursday- Sunday normally included late night drunk escapades. People took notice, and everyone thought I was a fucking lunatic, and sometimes I looked like one too.
$15,000. That was my number. The second I had that in my bank account I was out, and I was going to travel full- time, and attempt to make it my career. My business skills and knack for analytics was superb, and my initial projections based on my average weekly and monthly earnings put me at making this amount by September, based on how much I was working. But as I recorded my earnings from 3 restaurants and the few photo/ video jobs I got, my lowest earning week was $1150, and my highest week was $1900. Slowly, my end date became August, then July, then somehow June. I knew I'd hit my $15,000 mark by the first week of June, so I put in my 2 week notice at the restaurants in mid May. As those working months went on, people knew something was up. Like come on, no one works that many hours for no reason, I turned into a working zombie that barely slept. However, I didn't tell anyone my 'master plan,' I was afraid they would take away shifts or not be happy that I planned on leaving. I was terrified putting in my 2 week notice, but everyone was very happy for me and what I was setting off to do, and they all finally understood why I killed myself working 120+ hours a week.
I didn't plan to write so much about this part of my life, but it was a huge building block of where I am now, and the 7 years I spent at restaurants taught me so much. In the last month of work, I got a call from EF College Break, they knew how many trips I took with them over the years, and they saw my photos on Instagram picking up a lot of traction. They offered me 2 weeks all expenses paid to document their trip to England, Scotland, Ireland, and Wales. I couldn't believe it, it was really happening. I was getting 2 weeks of travel for FREE to be a photographer and make a video, it was baffling. I was going to do this trip, and then spend 3 months in the USA doing a road trip with my buddy Alex, then didn't have a plan after, but knew I'd be traveling. However, the day before I flew to Europe, was my big going away party, of course hosted at one of the restaurants I worked at, it became my family, so it felt right to host the party there. As I was driving to the going away party, Alex called and some family matters came up and he had to cancel the 3 month road trip. WHAT? I couldn't believe it, and I didn't even have time to process it because soon enough I was with tons of friends and family enjoying and eating and drinking the night away.
Anyways, I went to Europe, EF provided me a round trip ticket. After my flight to Scotland, and a few days to process the news about the road trip, I made a radical decision. I didn't plan on boarding my flight home from Europe after the 2 weeks with EF. My family was sad but understood, I wasn't coming home. What turned into 2 weeks in Europe, turned into 3 months across Europe, Africa, and Asia, which spiraled into the following years of crazy travel where I have now been to 48 countries as a 24 year old.
To sum it up, when I backpacked Europe, Morocco, and Asia... I solo traveled, met up with friends across the globe, Bri came out for a few weeks, and I ended the Europe travel with 2 weeks in Bali, Indonesia with my new boss- Tim Sykes.
The following 7 months consisted of nonstop global travel with this guy in some of the most luxurious places I have ever been in my life, to sum it up... it was fucking insane. After 7 months with him traveling, building businesses, and acting as his right hand man for photography, videography, business, charity, and much much more, I decided it was time to go off on my own. Because as amazing as it was, I was living and carrying out his dreams, not mine.
To keep this blog not the length of a book, I'm going to keep the rest to the point and broad, and will go into more in future blog posts. But the following few years until today, I have traveled the world, become a photographer and filmmaker working with some of the biggest brands and names in the world, and have sure enough been able to make and sustain a healthy living working as my own boss in the world of content creation. In addition to photo, video, and creating, I have dabbled in Forex, Facebook Ads, Digital Art, Ecommerce, and more. I actually probably attribute most of my success to my drive, and business skills.
Now I continue doing what I love, creating more, teaching, impacting more, and am continuing to help others realize they too can turn their dreams and passion into a thriving career. To hit on my main question "Who am I?" I still couldn't tell you. A lot of people have different opinions on me, and most people still don't understand how I make a living. I am just a dude who said No to societal norms, and carved his own path. And now I continue to travel, create, and do what I love.