I’ve been shooting a long time. Unfortunately, most of those years my photography stayed the same. Last year I studied and learned a lot, and this year I want to elevate my skill/vision/art/technique WAY up! I’m accomplishing this in a couple ways: read, read, read, shoot every day…a lot… and participate in photography forums, challenges, get critiqued and take some workshops. Moving to Austin has given me the gift of time and space and beauty. I love looking at the always-changing sky. The colorful culture delights me. I love capturing people doing whatever they’re doing. Especially my daughter, my sons and my husband. God is a ray of sunshine in my soul. He is the light of this world. I hope I can photographically capture that sunshine in all sorts of ways. I love when photography expresses emotions that words cannot say.
So far this year:
-I’ve paid more attention to shutter speed, and shooting indoors requires a higher ISO much of the time. I’m learning to bounce flash off the ceiling for some situations. I’m discovering that noise doesn’t bother me like it probably should. I’m grateful for Karen Russell’s PDF on focus. It was super helpful. I once read an article from some famous photographer who said that if a photo is not tack sharp, then it should never see the light of day. Delete it immediately. Well, I have plenty of spontaneous, soft shots of precious moments that I would never delete! But I do SO desire to nail those precious shots better! Karen does a great job of explaining what’s acceptable and what’s not in the focus realm. I still have to calibrate my lenses, especially my 50mm. On the to-do list.
-Composition. Trying to get it right in camera, but also have learned that cropping in post is perfectly fine as long as you have the pixels you need. Also framing loosely to give more room for framing a print, etc. Picture Perfect Practice is fantastic for this subject. I enjoy Roberto Valenzuela’s exercises and his thinking. I love that it’s all about practice and working for it…and the beautiful compositions will come.
-Emotion: The Art of Photography is a great book. It makes me think about my purpose as I shoot. How am I seeing this scene? What am I wanting to bring out? How can I use light and composition to capture that emotion? What story am I telling? To me, this is the difference between snapshots and meaningful photography. I love that even though something technically may be off in some of my pictures, the emotion is coming through. To me, those are keepers. Especially in documenting the lives of my kids.
-Post processing: Wow, so much to learn here. I’ve been in Photoshop for years and LR for one, and I’m just scratching the surface. The super talented women in my 365 group do some AH-MAZING stuff in post.
Whew, that’s a lot in the first 16 days of January.
Next up: Ginger Unzueta’s Workshop and the start of another group working through The Vision Toolbox by David duChemin. CAN’T WAIT. Monday, hurry up and get here.