I received this guitar as my first “real” instrument when I was about 14. It was one of the best Christmas presents I’ve ever received. I named her Christina, after one of my favorite artists, Christina Perri. However, it wasn’t until I was about 16 that I seriously began teaching myself how to play. I would go on YouTube or Guitar Tabs and look up my favorite songs, and learn how to play them. Eventually, through imitation and playing by ear I was teaching myself how to do different fingerpicking and licks. My library of chords I know has only grown steadily over the past four years. I have loved watching myself grow as a guitarist and gradually open up to trying new things. But by far the most fulfilling part of learning guitar was finally being able to put accompaniment to my original music. I had been writing songs since I was 11, but having not settled into an instrument yet, I only could write down lyrics and record the melody. When I picked up the guitar I was able to put chords behind my words and breathe life into songs that could only be sung from a notebook. I have used my guitar to write since then, and now it is rare that I write a song without at least attempting to put guitar behind it. Writing with a guitar has also helped me to develop my personal style as an artist.