Saturday, May 21, 2016

Project 52 - 7 and 5 - Week 20


I'm always looking for ways to challenge myself behind the camera. Sometimes that means I'll try a new technique or edit differently, but this week was a little different. After reading about how Kelly Marleau from FiddleLeaf Photography took pictures during the witching hour every day for a month, I thought I might try something like this as well. Since I work late on Tuesdays, I decided that 5:00 pm might not work best for me. Instead, I settled on 7:00 am and only for a week... and then on that first day I found myself taking pictures at 7:00 am and 5:00 pm. Apparently, I had to make my own rules.

So, why was this a challenge? Perhaps because 7 and 5 are some of the busiest times in our house. I'll admit that there were days that I quickly snapped a couple pictures and moved on with the tasks for that day, but in some ways, this made me slow down. Notice a moment and be in a moment... set everything else aside for a bit.

I also came to realize that 7:00 am and 5:00 pm are also the two times of the day that Riley is most likely to have Kindle/TV time. I could have shot a whole week of her sitting in front of the Kindle so I had to remind myself that I'm not the worst mom out there, but that this is just reflective of our lives at two brief moments of the day. Luckily, some days capture other moments, such as reading with her dad, feeding the cat a treat, practicing for a school performance, homework time, and even a moment when no one was home, but me.

Most importantly for me, I wanted these pictures to tell the story of our lives. It's why I capture pictures. I want to look back and have these pictures remind me of something, even if it's that my kid watches cartoons during her breakfast every day. They might be pretty, they might not, but they are real.

Monday, May 16, 2016

ClickinWalk 2016

Saturday morning I attended my third photo walk - the second through Clickin Moms. Last year we met at the Sculpture Garden and it was great, but I think I loved this one the best. I think my pictures were better last year, but I learned so much more this year and, since it was a much smaller group, I was able to connect with others in a more meaningful way.

Our group consisted of professional and hobbyist photographers - and was led by two professionals who provided great information on everything from lenses and flash to posing to running a photography business. There were times I wasn't taking pictures because I just wanted to suck up all the knowledge they were sharing.

This year we started at the Mill Ruins Park, walked up to the boardwalk, through Mill City, around the farmer's market, into the Guthrie, and back to the Stone Arch Bridge. The group headed back to the farmer's market for lunch, but between my parking meter running out of time and my back killing me I decided to go home. It was a hard decision because I didn't want to miss a thing with this group.

Our walk was from 9:00 to 1:00 which I thought would be long, but the time flew right by. The only thing I would have liked to change was the weather since it was about 38 degrees when we started out and super windy, but I suppose it could have been raining (or snowing because, you know, Minnesota...) so I won't complain.

I love this area since there are so many interesting spots and so many lovely textures, whether it's flowers, water, old stone buildings, metal... this area has it covered. It's no surprise that so many photographers come to this area for their photo sessions. In fact, we ran into a woman that was doing mini sessions and I thought she looked familiar. I think she might have lead our group when I did the World Wide Photo Walk.

Below isn't a great picture (I snapped it at the last moment without changing my settings), but here are our two leaders, Kirsten and Angela. Angela was showing us how to pose in this spot to block the posts and fire hydrant behind her (and then you just have to clone out the big sign that was next to her). I was able to take a few shots of her with her full frame camera which was super dangerous because it just stirred up in me how much I would love one (but don't need one). Still, such a fun learning moment.

Speedlight recommendations

While in the Guthrie we checked out the Amber Room and the Endless Bridge...

More textures and lots of places for reflections as well...

As we were walking across the Stone Arch bridge we were even able to be a part of a marriage proposal. It was a fun little surprise to add to our day.

I really need to do more of these walks. I love being part of the photography community and the support everyone provides for each other. I can't wait for the next one.