Young photographer SNAPs prize-winning pictures

When Garet Bonham used to go on photo shoots, he would come back with only one or two usable shots.

"We would only print one of 100 photos," said his mother, Wendy Bonham.

"But now, wow! I am surprised at how knowledgeable he is on photography."

Bonham, 24, has seizures that have affected his brain's development since he was a little boy.

"Garet can be in the age range of 6 to 24. He can fool you if you don't catch on," said his father, Russ Bonham.

Garet Bonham took up photography a few years ago and now snaps photos every day. Eight of his photos have been published in a local newspaper but now he is more focused on taking photos for Special Needs Advocacy Parent's EnterpriZe business.

EnterpriZe helps special needs individuals learn business skills through making pottery, painting and framing photography. Bonham has sold hundreds of dollars of photographs and postcards through local festivals and SNAP's temporary store in downtown Sequim.

"It gives participants a chance to use their skills to earn money," said EnterpriZe mentor Bonne Smith.

Smith helps him decide which photos the public might like to buy.

"He does a good job of catching the moment," Smith said about Bonham's photography.

He has learned to focus and frame his shots and to crop and change photos on the computer.

Bonham's part-time caregiver Steve Kallmeyer has taught him to use Photoshop, a photo editing computer program.

Bonham goes to EnterpriZe every Wednesday before working at the Boys & Girls Club in Sequim.

"Garet sells his stuff and other people's stuff well. Just like getting the job at the Boys & Girls Club, he sells himself well," said Smith.

Before the Bonham family moved to Sequim three years ago from Utah, Garet worked at a pizza restaurant and a candy store. In Sequim, he put in applications for work without success before deciding he wanted to work at the Carroll C. Kendall Boys & Girls Club. He went into the club and introduced himself to unit director Mary Budke, asking her for a job. She was impressed with his composure and hired him a few days later.

Bonham does janitorial work on Wednesdays. He is looking forward to volunteer Stephen Rosales teaching him how to clean the club's bus.

Special Olympics

Bonham was the impetus for starting the Clallam County Special Olympics team three years ago.

"He nudged us every day, asking when he could compete here," his mother said.

His prodding motivated his parents to establish Clallam County's first team, the Orcas.

At the end of May, gold medal winners from the local Olympics will participate in the Washington state summer games at Fort Lewis.

From their group of 45 athletes, the Orcas will send 12 track and field participants and seven swimmers. Bonham will compete in the 200-meter run and 4X100 relay.

He also is active on the Orcas basketball team.

"When they began practicing we didn't think they'd win a game but when they got out to play for real there, they were amazing," his father said.

The team won all five of its games in Bremerton but lost at the championships in Wenatchee. They received silver medals.

Garet Bonham's photography can be seen online at, www. or look for the SNAP booth at the Lavender Festival.

Reach Matthew Nash at

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