Best Of

1. ACHIEVING NATURAL EXPRESSIONS: This post by my fabulous friend Jessica was a breath of fresh air. I’m really studying the art of authenticity in my work right now and she gives some fabulous behind the scene examples of how to achieve that in a variety of settings.

2. KEEPING PHOTOGRAPHY AS A HOBBY…NOT A BUSINESS. I’m so glad someone is blogging about this topic! There is a lot I could say about this issue. Since opting to take 2011 as a Sabbatical from portrait work I have made some amazing discoveries about myself, photography, and photography business. I shouldn’t really be all that surprised to learn that once I removed myself from everything I found that I really don’t enjoy having a photography business, and absolutely love the enjoyment that comes in photographing my life, family, and friends for pleasure. I’m still drawing conclusions from the time away, and am certainly grateful for my experiences in the past and where they have led me, but indeed I am learning that there is a time and a season for everything. And most of all, you can certainly have “professional” quality images without having photography be a “professional” role in your life.

3. PHOTOGRAPHER WISE WORDS: Loved this interview with Amy Wentzel. A favorite quote, “I remember when it really clicked for me that I needed to be uniquely myself and not imitate anyone else’s style. It really set me free and empowered me because I realized that I no longer had to be intimidated if I couldn’t do what someone else could do. I just had to be the best version of Amy and people would jive with the authenticity in that!” Some wise words there, my friends.

4. THE VALUE OF AUTHENTIC IMAGERY: I recently discovered this amazing session by photographer, Dan O’Day. It was extremely moving for me. Not only does it show the value in personal projects, and documenting real life, it makes me look at photography completely differently. So often we are bombarded with “eye candy” images. The perfection of beauty, the surface level appeal to life. Did you ever stop to think about what “eye candy” indicates? To me its just a sweetness that is momentary, doesn’t last, and most certainly doesn’t nourish. Think about that as you look at these images, and ask me if you feel nourished afterwards. I think there is a profound lesson to be learned there. I’ll let you decide what that lesson should be.

5. IMAGE INSPIRATION: This post of classic children images was absolutely delightful and refreshing. Despite the stylized difference between today and yesterday, I think we can gain a fresh new perspective by being retrospective!

7 Responses

  1. I love reading the articles you posted here. The article about keeping photography as a hobby… not a business really made me think. I’ve been wanting to start my own business for a few years now, but after reading that article, it seems as though I’ve been way too hard on myself. I’ve been beating myself up because I don’t have a business but I’m totally enjoying just shooting for fun. Occasionally, I do a photo shoot for family or friends, but I find the most joy in photographing my family. Deadlines and the pressure to please my “clients” gets me anxious. So, yeah, this article is a breath of fresh air for me. Thanks for sharing this!

    1. Lisa! There is a time and season to everything. And being a professional photographer doesn’t mean the images become better (we can be outstanding photographers as a hobby). In my humble opinion, if you aren’t compelled to go into business because you must support your family and have no other alternative…I think you should make the decision based on what brings you the most joy. When I was shooting professionally I never photographed my family because I was too tired and photography was “work”. Now that I’m taking some time off, I find so much joy in capturing my own life, family, and personal projects that are just for fun. For ME, photography right now needs to be a hobby. That is where the joy is. For others, their personality and season of life brings joy with working for clients. Its not a one size fits all, but very individual case by case. I just wish that we could rid the stereotype that if you’re good you need to have a business, or that having a business suddenly brings a mantel of credibility to your work. We can be quite fulfilled and happy as independent artists 🙂 We just need to do what is right for us.

  2. Hi Brooke, Just finished looking at Dan’s pictures and wow! I was not ready for the wave of emotions that washed over me…(You should warn people to have kleenex’s on hand).These are the pictures people will remember and cherish of their parents, grandparents and their lives. I think i will try documenting real life and worry less about the poses…..thanks, miranda

  3. The Dan O’Day shoot is what inspired me to take pictures of my grandparents for the Advanced Pro Week 3 homework assignment! I have decided to make sure I make time for personal projects and that is going to be one of them.

    I wasn’t sure of this decision until receiving a phone call from my mother (her parents were the ones I took pictures of). She told me that she had never seen a picture capture who her parents truly were until she saw my images. That is the greatest compliment I have ever received regarding my photography. It was then that I decided that this is something I want to offer.

    I’m still not sure on the logistics of finding these couples but I am determined to make this a part of my photography career. It’s so important to keep that passion so you don’t get bogged down with the business side of photography!

    1. Rebecca! I absolutely loved the images you took of your grandparents!! What an incredible personal project! And a great compliment from your mom! Seriously, that is what life is all about, and when we can capture it authentically everyone is affected 🙂 Can’t wait to see what else you do with this approach!

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