Six years. I’ve learned so much about photography and about myself in the last eight years. Yes, eight…and if you really wanted to go back to the very beginning, even longer. Remember, I didn’t get my first camera with the intention of going into business. I DID get my first camera to be able to take excellent pictures of my children. I knew I wanted a DSLR so that I could have control over different settings and change lenses…little did I know what all that really entailed learning. For many years I learned; and in all honesty, I’m a quick learner, there was just SO much to learn (I’m also a bit of a perfectionist…so that comes into play, too).
There was a point, after reading dozens of books, blogs, and online tutorials, that I reached the end of what I could teach myself.
Thank goodness for my cousin & my friend who allowed me to photograph their babies and loved the results even in my earliest attempts – these are some of the first few babies I photographed. At that time, I couldn’t quite put my finger on it, but I knew my work wasn’t how I wanted it to look – my lighting, my posing, my processing…just not how I wanted it to look.
I went in search of where I could learn more, and that is when I discovered in person workshops and mentorships. Since I fell in love with photographing my first newborn in 2009, and at the same time realized I really had no idea what I was doing, the first workshop I looked for was for newborns. I found Tracey Raver & Kelley Ryden’s Baby Posing, and saved up to attend in 2010. I learned SO much. I put into practice what I had learned, but I still wasn’t where I wanted to be:
After more perfecting of what I had learned, a one-on-one mentorship with the fabulous Amanda Cutler, and LOTS of conversations with fellow photographers, I finally found my own style centered around neutrals and soft muted tones, perfected my posing and my lighting. Am I finished? No way – there is always more I can learn and more I can perfect.
Workshops have given me so much: camera skills, posing skills, business knowledge, and friendships. It’s all wonderful, but to have friends “in the industry,” ladies (and gents) who will listen as I bounce ideas, encourage when needed, and give inspiration is just delightful. If you are an aspiring photographer, I cannot recommend workshops enough for both the photography knowledge and the friendships.
Some of my inspiration: Meagan Ready Photography ~~ Lauren Melissari Photography ~~ Courtney Prinzo Photography ~~ LyndseyLew Photography ~~ Stevie Cruz Photography ~~ Lullaby Lane Photography ~~ Shanon Zais Photography ~~ Sweet Sky Photography ~~