So an update on what I’m learning, and how I’m challenging myself to grow is long overdue! As I started this blog, I really was planning on posting all the things I was learning on a regular basis. Honestly, I did not think I would have such an overwhelming response from my friends and families to take their pictures (but I’m humbled and grateful for it!). It’s been crazy, especially with the holidays trying to get it all done, and figure out how to keep up with shoots, learning about photography and editing, homeschool and normal life. I absolutely LOVE what I’m doing however, and that makes all the difference from being stressed, to just going along with life’s crazy. In the midst of it all I AM being challenged daily. So I’m sure your thinking, “You keep saying that, but how exactly are you being challenged?” I will do my best to summarize it all….
So first off…all these shoots I’m doing are forcing me to pick up my camera and take pictures. It’s making me apply the technical knowledge that I’m learning on a regular basis, which is helping me make it applied knowledge that I can access quicker and quicker. It’s also exposing my trouble spots. At every shoot I’m learning what not to do, or seeing what I wish I had done, or frankly seeing areas in my technique and composition that I need to work on. I had an aha moment as I was chasing the illusive crispness in my photos the other day with making sure my shutter speed is fast enough. With my 50 mm I finally figured out my shutter speed needs to be at least up around 1/80 for me to be happy with the results…but then I got a zoom lens for Christmas (a Nikkor 18-200 mm) and I’m struggling again to find that sweet spot. I guess there is still some fogginess that I need to work through with it all, because what I think I understand doesn’t always seem to work in every situation.
On that note…picking up my camera, I’m hoping to do that more this year. I want to expand my knowledge to more areas, not just portraiture. Lifestyle and nature photography (including HDR) are areas I’d love to explore more. Really I just want to hone my ability to see artistically, and capture God’s beauty wherever I find it. I’ve been playing with the idea of the “365 Day Challenge” where you take at least one pic every day for a year…but I’m afraid with my crazy life, to commit to that..so I’ve been thinking of a weekly challenge. But I’m so ADD sometimes, I think I need direction. If any of you, know of any bloggers out there doing challenges like that please feel free to share. I have participated in You Capture before I had my DSLR camera (who I’ve named George…but that’s a post for another day), and am thinking that I might need to go back there and start up again. This weeks theme is “festive”. Hmmmm….now that Christmas and New Years is over, I’m not feeling particularly festive, so I may have to get creative!
The next thing, is I am actively looking for resources that teach me and help me learn about photography and editing. I took a trip out West to visit a friend and she introduced me to Scott Kelby and his books, which I have yet to own but LOVE! I’ve also have been doing a trial basis with his website, and have decided that as soon as I can afford it I need to upgrade to the year subscription. Seriously the amount of training videos I’ve been able to watch on both photography and Lightroom have been both helpful and AMAZING! What a rich resource and proving well worth the money I would invest in it.
Also I’ve signed up for a couple courses at local photography school and I’m so very excited about them. The hubby and I worked out a deal to cover the homeschool stuff on Monday’s since that’s his day off, so I can get away for the class over the next 6 weeks. It starts this Monday! Eeeeek! I can’t wait. I also will be doing a once a month workshop over the next four months on how to start a photography business. I figured, it was worth the investment to learn what I need to up front, before I get set in my ways and make lots of mistakes. It is so much easier to do it right from the start, don’t you think?
So these are just a few of the things I’m doing and thinking about. How about you? Where are you in your journey with photography? Have you set any goals or challenges for yourself in the new year? If so I’d love to hear about them! Maybe we can encourage each other as we head into 2013!