Tuesday, November 16, 2010
Lessons in Photography
Oh, how I love photography. Taking pictures of people and places and things. Finding the love and the joy in creating something that looks amazing. I have rediscovered myself behind the lens of my camera in the past couple of months.
Once upon a time, many years ago, my ex-husband owed me a lot of money. He did not have it, so he gave me a camera that he did not use instead. I learned to take pictures. I learned about composition. I learned about color and dynamics. In short, I learned everything I could about this new gift. It is probably one of the best gifts that I ever received. I had very few pictures of my kids at that time. I never had a nice camera. For years, not even a cheap camera. So, this was an amazing gift to someone who had never done photo's before.
I took a class and met someone who loved my composition skills. I started working with him at weddings and learned what type of pictures people want and will buy. I learned where to take the film to develop it. I learned how much to charge. I learned to be good.
There was a time for many years when I did pictures on my own. It was my third job that I used to help support the kids and myself through the difficult years. I have done weddings, funerals, graduations, family events, and my own children's pictures. I have learned what I like and what I don't like.
Times change, and I pretty much got out of the photography business. Equipment changes, and I could not afford a digital. Film prices sky rocket and I could not affort the expense of the hobby that no longer paid for itself.
I have wanted a good camera for a very long time. Finally, this year, I was able to buy one. It happens to be my Mother's day, Birthday and Christmas gift for the next ten years! (at least!) It is a Nikon D200 and I bought it used. It has more buttons and dials on it than any camera I have ever used before. It has more meters and gadgits on it then I have ever imagined. I find myself in the position where I need to relearn everything that I thought I knew about taking pictures. This camera is not automatic in any way, (well, except focusing, it will do that if I want it to!). So, I have to admit that I have never been this perplexed with learning anything.
Still, I have tenacity, and I will learn! So, I thought about the ways I could go about learning. I looked on the internet. I bought books. I read about other photographers. And, finally, I started my own separate blog. It is a blog about photography. It is a 365 day journey that I am doing as I learn to take pictures all over again. It is also much harder than when I learned to take them before. There is much more to remember than I remembered!
The funny things is that I am actually learning. I am doing. When I look at my pictures, even from a mere two months ago, the changes are there. Small ones, but changes nevertheless. I can see a difference. I don't need to edit as much, or take as many pictures before I find "the perfect one".
I think we each have challenges like my photography. You have probably heard the old saying "you can't teach an old dog new tricks". I have found that to be 100% wrong. It might be a little harder to teach the 'old dog', but they can change just as well as a new one.
We will each face times in our lives when we will need to change. We will need to risk, to move, to grow, to have an adventure. Everyone of us face trials and difficulties in life. But, we can change. We can't change the past, but we can start today and change the path we are on. We can even change the ending of it. It might take a little (or even a lot) of tenacity, but it is possible.
I think it starts when we visualize the end that we want. Then we look at where we are right now and draw a new path to get there. For me, that path has led me back to photography. It has led me closer to family. It has led me home.
I challenge you to find something in your life that you want to change. Something that gives you joy. That makes you feel. That gives you comfort, challenge and skill. Then, go and do it.
By the way, if you want to see any of my pictures, you can check them out over at A Moment in Time
this month, every post I am doing is about black and white photography. I am getting back to basics and learning as I go. I miss the color, but I am also learning much more about light and shadow.