Billy Poggi – Photographer- WJ Awesome

Learn more about Billy and his media project-

WJ Awesome: WJ Awesome
Instagram: billy_wja
Twitter: @billypoggi
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UMFsntlursw

Hometown: Stafford, VA
Years in the DMV: All of his life until 2006, came back in 2013

How did you get into photography?
BP – It really all started with a cheap point & shoot camera. I was just a teenager,
messing around taking pictures of my friends and our adventures. Then I just
continued to get better at photography, so I bought better and better equipment to
chronicle the awesome adventures I was pursuing.

Tell us about some of these adventures?
Well my background is in the military, so I spent some time in Iraq while in the
Marine Corps and got some riveting pictures there. Some of the other places I’ve
been include Zion National Park in Utah, Mount Whitney, Seattle, and Hawaii, to
name a few. I’ve taken some of my camera 150 feet below the sea diving in Hawaii,
as well as thousands of feet up the Zion Canyon cliffs.

What song best describes or inspires you?
BP – Knights of Cydonia by Muse. I saw Muse in concert recently, and they ended
their show with this song. It was the perfect ending.

Many people don’t know this about me, but…
BP – I’m actually a little scared of heights… I know it sounds crazy after hearing me
talk about hiking up Zion Canyon, but I believe the best way to overcome your fears
and break out of your comfort zone is to face those fears head on…and just go for it!

If I was the Mayor of Washington, DC, I would…
BP – DC is a wonderful melting pot of cultures, but its had a lot of growing pains and
underlying tensions that are simmering. I’d work to make DC safe for all cultures –
make it a place with a constant good vibe.

Favorite place to go/Thing to do in DC/DMV:
BP – I really like the National Zoo and the National Mall – for three main reasons:
They are places where you can get some really great photos, they are very
inexpensive, and they are great places to take the kids and let them run around.

One place in DC that you haven’t yet been that’s on your hit list for 2016?
BP – You know, I’ve always been interested in any type of underground installation.
When I was in Korea, they had a whole underground city where you could just
explore for hours on end and I just found it amazing. I’ve been looking for that type
of place in DC. So some place like the Dupont Underground would be really cool.

What does 2016 and beyond hold for Billy Poggi & WJ Awesome?
BP – I’m very excited about 2016 and beyond. This year, I’m looking to take WJ
Awesome into a new direction. We’re going to shift the business model and work
more through a platform called Patreon. Patreon is an online crowdfunding
platform that helps creatives gain income from their work. And at my 9-to-5, I’m
going to start another software business with a Devops mindset. I’m going to be co-
founding it with a few other guys later this summer, so stay tuned!


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