What a week. This is the third week into the photography course and I had to submit 3 photos: one with natural light, natural skin tones and catch lights in the eyes; one using aperture to tell a story; and one using shutting speed to show or stop motion. I’m completely unhappy with the results. I guess everyone has their off weeks and this one was mine. I feel like I’ve taken 15 steps backwards.
As I do what I do best – ANALYZE – something came to mind about my learning curve. I start out fast when I’m learning something new. I manage to do everything correct and execution is wonderful. Because I learn so much so fast in the first part of the curve, I find myself getting excited and thinking, If I learned this much this fast, who knows what else I could accomplish in a short amount of time! And then boom, insert brick wall. I start to over-think it. I start to demand perfection. I start to demand perfection NOW. So while I’m unhappy with my submissions for this assignment, I’m hoping to just learn this is how I am and to just try to go with the flow and accept that not every shooting session is going to be a winner.
First up: Catch lights. Catch lights are those little speckles or dots of light in the eyes that bring them so much life. I love how they look, but I realized getting this look is not natural for me. No matter how I angled Jim (from standing up to kneeling down to turning 360 degrees with me trying to find that stinking light) I just couldn’t get those dots to pop. This was the best I could get which is frustrating because his skin is over exposed and the background bokeh isn’t interesting at all. But major thanks to the model for trying to help!!
Then last night I tried to use twinkle lights to get some catch lights into those baby blues. Its not natural light so I couldn’t cheat and submit that photo instead (but oh, how I was tempted!), but I think it turned out much better.
The next shot: Using aperture to tell a story. I grabbed my first DSLR from over 10 years ago and a small globe we have to illustrate how this camera introduced me into the world of photography. I struggled finding a balance where the camera was exposed well enough without blowing out the globe. Still not completely happy with the result, but its kinda cute. 😉
Lastly: Illustrating either showing motion or stopping motion. I stopped motion with Jackson in the air catching his ball a couple of weeks ago. This week I wanted to show motion (have one area blurry) by capturing him wagging his beautiful thick furry tale. However, he couldn’t figure out why I was taking pictures of his toosh and kept circling back around to find out what was going on.
This was the best that I got and submitted this photo for the assignment. Parts of his body are cut off and that isn’t good photography since he’s the subject, but its what I got.
My husband got on me this week for being too hard on myself. He says the photos are still good. While yes, they’re not bad and yes, I’m getting better in consistency, I told him I just can’t accept “good”. We get better by striving for perfection and while there admittedly is a happy balance in that, I still firmly believe that if I don’t push myself hard, no one else will and I want to one day be a great and exceptional photographer.
Other than that, though, this week was fabulous! Its been so foggy and I actually love love love this weather. Yeah, its not great weather to capture those stupid catch lights! But its still my favorite. Onto next week, the 4th and final week of class.
In closing, I have a confession: I signed up for Lynne’s second course in shooting: Shooting 201: Beyond The Basics which begins January 21st. I was planning on this being my next work shop, but I didn’t think I would be signing up for it so soon! I figured I would practice what I learned for a couple of months and then start this workshop. But it was late at night when I saw that the January workshop was the only time it was going to run for the next four months (at least) and I freaked out. I really should not have access to a credit card between the hours of midnight and 5 a.m. While I’m regretting signing up now as I don’t think I have a mastery of the basics yet, this is my own fault and no refunds! So I’ll be shooting until I’m sick of it for the next 4 weeks to prepare for Beyond the Basics.
Hope everyone enjoyed the photos and has a superb week!