Friday, July 1, 2011

This is the part where I have a existential melt down

Something happened the other day.

Actually, it's been happening for a while, I just happened to notice that it happened while I wasn't paying attention... the other day.

I've been taking photos since I was allowed to have a camera. I took "real photos" starting in high school with a real SLR, but they were still just snapshots in most circles. To be fair, they were sometimes better than average snapshots... for someone that didn't know anything other than full auto mode.

4 years ago I started this blog with a mission, and that was to start a photography business. Over time, I realized I was talking a LOT about myself, and not enough about photography (I didn't have many sessions back then), so I split the business part of it off and that's how I ended up with this personal blog. Anyway, I actually succeeded in my goal. I practiced a lot (and still do).

At first I thought I was doing really good. I knew there was better, but I felt like I was keeping pace. I'll show you an example of some of my early work. (This is my sister, so she won't be upset with me if I share. I love you Amber! lol). At the time I was so proud of this photo, and now when I look at it I see 19 different problems I should have fixed.


But you know what? I'm still going to be proud of it. You know why? Because back then, I was doing it. I wasn't claiming to be trying, as I sat on my butt daydreaming about photography. Nope, I was actually out there DOING IT. There's a line from my favorite show "friends" where Monica joins a dance group. The instructor from the front yells "You're doing it wrong!" and Monica yells back as she tap dances away "At least I'm doing it!", and that's kind of how I feel about it looking back.

That's something to be proud of, regardless of my technical outcome.

The other day, as I was surfing some other photographer's website I had an epiphany of sorts. I just realized how much things had changed, how the look of my photos had evolved. How I feel like I really DO keep pace with photographers nowadays (and that I was delusional then). But the truth is, that photographers I idolized 4 years ago, I don't so much anymore. I've "outgrown" them. Not in a disrespectful way, mind you, but just in a "moving on" sort of phase of my life. It's kind of scary to move away from people that you respected so deeply, and fly without a net as you go at it alone.

Don't get me wrong, I'm still deeply inspired by other photographers. I'm still learning - we're always learning. If you're not, then you're pretty full of yourself.

In the past couple months, my photos have taken the biggest jump they've ever taken and I really don't know what happened. I'll be honest, it made me a little nervous and I felt a little ill over the whole thing. I mean, how does one just suddenly *see* the world in a different light? That's what you pay for when you hire a photographer, you're buying the way that they see the world.

So here I sit last week, having my own personal mini melt down of sorts, not that I really had any reason to have one to be honest. I was hours away from a really important shoot. You see, Bailey is part of one of my favorite client/families. Morgan, her older sister was a senior last year, and also part of a big project I put out. Bailey set in the back seat that whole time, waiting for HER turn in the spotlight.

And last week it was finally her time. I felt like I'd set the bar so high for myself that I was worried I might not be able to jump it, and if I did so, I would not only disappoint myself, but I'd disappoint Bailey who really was looking for something special.

I made a point to just get over it, and go DO IT. (at least I'm doing it!) and what happened was one of my all time favorite photos yet....


I feel like this photo needs a title.

Here's a beautiful young woman, that put a ton of faith in me (which is scary), trusts the way I see the world (which is weird) and we end up with a photo, that I'd be happy to hang on my own wall in a giant canvas.

So I guess I'm saying, thank you to all those people that trust me, even when I sometimes don't trust myself.

I promise you'll never see me melt down. I do that in my head. ;)


Here's a few more from her session - which will end up with more photos than a wedding when we're done if we keep up at this rate. ha!




What's next from Bailey? Well, think Marilyn.

Yes.. that one.


Hiedi said...

Gorgeous- absolutely gorgeous!

Jen said...

Your photos are gorgeous!

Happy SITS day!

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