Wednesday, July 23, 2008

new dress & a photography lesson

I am a lover of photography.  I can spend hours completely engrossed in stimulating images.  I've had this yearning, for years, to better my skills.  I purchased the New York Institute of Photography self-learning program eons ago {it's on VHS if that gives you any clue}, and it's still unopened, sitting there on my shelf taunting me.  I just never seemed to have the time.

While I've always enjoyed photography and spend too many hours and too many dollars on this hobby, I've recently been pushing myself to learn more.  To move from automatic mode to manual ... not an easy task when you have little brain capacity left!

With my recent blog addiction, I've discovered amazing photography sites ... and don't even get me started on the flickr subject {one complete day can be gone looking at photos found there}!  I've listed some of my favorite photography blogs under my inspirations ... I truly find myself inspired daily by these photographers.

One of my favs, Me Ra Koh sells instructional DVD's.  I purchased a couple of the DVD's a few months ago and finally had the chance to watch one the other night.  Once again, I was inspired to grab my camera and get to work.  {I urge you to check out Me Ra's post today and if you have five minutes, you will love this slideshow.}

Anyway.  Where is all this rambling taking me?

Once a year I have the girls photos taken from the lovely Bloomers Photography.  And am always on the lookout for 'photo worthy' outfits.  Exhibit A below ...

{last year's christmas card from wiley valentine | photos: bloomers photography | outfits: chasing fireflies}

This year, I've somehow found too many outfits, but there's one I'm partial to.  And after watching Me Ra's video, I was so inspired to do my own shoot {although, I know I'll still be calling on Jodi} that when my husband left the other morning for a meeting {that'd be my photo-phobe husband ... thinks I'm torturing the kids when I'm photographing them ... and maybe I am when I take 20 shots of the same position trying for that elusive 'money' shot!} ... so when he left for a meeting, I put the girls in their dresses {miss teenager still sleeping} and took them outside to play.

The key here, is that I took them outside to play.  One important thing I learned in the video from Me Ra is to just capture the moments.  Many a precious moment is lost when you ask a child to look up and "say cheese."  I had a great time letting them play and they were equally cooperative letting me shoot away because I wasn't demanding smiles from them.

The other thing I learned is that 'details' are very important.  When I look back on my photos someday ... I want to remember the gorgeous ruffles and use of fabric on the back of this awesome dress; I want to remember the way Piper was playing with the dog; Hunter's chubby hands & feet and the way she wouldn't let that flower go, and would stop and pick a petal off of it to give to me.

After the shoot, I couldn't wait to download them and take a look.  I love them ... all!  I realize I'm partial, they are my girls and they are my shots ... but still ... it's a blessing to learn something, put it to practice and get excited about the results.  Isn't it?


Anonymous said...

I know exactly how you feel. I'm obsessed with photography and finally splurged on an awesome DSLR (Nikon D70s). But then my photog class with Jessica Kaminski was canceled. :( So I have this awesome camera and am trying so hard to figure it all out. I mean, I know how to use it, but I've realized I'm way too psycho about the money shot. I'm taking your advice this weekend and just letting Avery play--no more posed shots since she HATES them anyway!

Anonymous said...

P.S. How did you put the collage together? PhotoShop?

tracie said...

illustrator actually ... i used to use photoshop but it's very difficult when you have multiple pictures.

bwp's awesome designer, nellie, gave me the tip to try illustrator. it can still be a little treacherous, but i'm getting the hang of it and it's way easier than photoshop. it just takes some resizing/cropping of photos and finessing of your document size.

this was the largest one i've done so far and i was pretty happy with the results.