Paul Denckla I have always been at home in the outdoors whether it is skiing, biking, sailing, riding horses, camping or just taking a walk on the beach. I grew up in a suburb of Philadelphia, went off to boarding school then back to the University of Pennsylvania to get a degree in Architecture. Later I attended Harvard, got an MBA, moved to Chicago and embarked on a 30-year career in the real estate investment management business. I have since retired and now live in Camden, Maine. With four great children and six grandchildren I do an extensive amount of travel.

With my love of children and my passion for photography I started the Young Photographers Initiative (aka YPIKIDS) late in 2006. This project let's me use the camera to tap into the energy, imagination and unbridled creativity of kids and it has been the most exciting and rewarding "ride" of my life.

My first project was with the Maine Children's Cancer Program in 2007 and the children were either under treatment for cancer or ones whose cancer was in remission. In my second project I worked with children whose parents were under treatment for cancer at the Massachusetts General Hospital's Cancer Center. The challenges that I faced in that program were very different and more intense at times. It was an amazing experience.

I am often asked, "Isn't it difficult working with families or individuals who have cancer". And my answer is always the same: "No, I actually consider myself fortunate to have the opportunity that I do. They are always so upbeat and positive about life, their lives. And when I put a camera in their hand and unleash the creative side of their brains, it brings a whole new dimension of energy and passion to their personalities. It is an experience I will never get tired of."