Last weekend I attended a photography workshop. Seven hours for me. Can you imagine?
Seven hours without a “Mom!” (shout it, whine it, giggle it, spit it, cry it- any which way I did not hear it!) Being a stay-at-home mom, this is a rarity. Even if I do manage a day to myself by going to the city one weekend day, inevitably I end up shopping for them. Which doesn’t count as proper me time.
This day was all about me doing something I love to do. With other adults that also love photography. What fun!
I learned a few key tips that should inspire better photos for sure, but even better was the time, oh sweet glorious time, to be with my camera. Learn it, experiment with it, practice.
Time + No Distractions = Productivity = Happy Me
Quite honestly, most of the pictures I took on that day are crap. It was not about taking great photos on that day, it was about learning how to take great photos. Without worrying about missing any big moment or perfect sparkling smile from my kids, I was able to take the time to manipulate my triangle of ISO, aperture, and shutter speed settings until it started to become clearer what changed what and how.
Even with the perfect combo of settings, with a dozen or more of us there snapping papparrazi-style, getting our gorgeous model to look directly into just my camera or positioning myself in the spot I desired was next to impossible.
Having said that, here are a couple of shots that I did end up liking.
Later in the week, a gloriously sunny day beckons me to practice my new skills. Not to mention that after almost eight years living here, I know that at this time of year, it is essential to soak up every possible ray I can, while I can. While Brennyn and I venture out for a walk, I envision shots of Brennyn playing in the fallen leaves, throwing up those golden hues, and laughing her brilliant laugh while I snap away. B, of course, will have none of it.
None. Of. It.
Annoyed at first, I resign myself to no photos and a grumpy girl. But then Riley leads us to the river.
Which apparently is where all the smiles were hiding because, minus the leaves, I suddenly get a whole lot of practice.One of the greatest lessons I learned on my photography day, was that I don’t need to take the perfect photo to get the perfect photo. These shots- the sun is too bright, the shadows too strong, but they are perfect. The perfect technical shot may have eluded me, but the perfect moments did not.
I caught her varying smiles. I caught that gap between her two front teeth. I caught that gorgeous, infectious, authentic joy.