Two years ago when Mattelyn was born, I, along with tons of other mom and dads-to-be, went out and purchased a DSLR camera to “capture” those important, special, fleeting moments with a newborn baby. And, like so many other mommy’s and daddy’s, I increasingly began to take horrible photos that I was frustrated with. I spent some time researching “why is my photo blurry,” “why is my photo so dark?” As my photos improved, my creative light began to shine. I really began thinking about every time I took a photo. I look at professional’s photos and feel INSPIRED. I connect with their vision and then see my own. I definitely haven’t found “my look” yet but I’m working towards it. And here I am, two years later, actually shooting in manual (never thought that day would come) and I am getting more confident in the shots I am getting as they’re increasingly “closer to what I envisioned.” With that, I have shared my photos intermittently through Instagram and Facebook and have received some very gracious (and rewarding) compliments/comments. As apprehensive as I am, I have now begun “officially” calling this a hobby because I upgraded my camera (still not a full-frame yet) to a Canon 70D (mainly for the high-definition video it takes), and purchased a new professional lens, (yes, only one! But it’s a start…). I have yet to take a real camera shooting course or an editing course, but between nap times, many late nights and the rare moments to myself, I have managed to teach myself a few things. I have dabbled in some online work and I believe I can now finally say I am okay with most of my photos.
(I wish I was the type of person that just EXUDED confidence in everything I do and had full-on ability to just OWN my work without hesitation, but alas, that isn’t me! So I am my biggest critic to date).
That said, we were just blessed to have my sister-in-law and her beautiful family visit us from West Palm Beach, Florida. Not only are they a GORGEOUS little group of people, but she was “willing” to allow me to practice my first “mini-shoot” on location to capture some moments with her beautiful family and to hopefully get a family portrait for them. I am FINALLY happy with these photos after I shot them – I downloaded and am used to taking 200 photos to get TWO that I REALLY LIKE. This time, however, I was careful when shooting and thought about the sunlight and the time of day. Although I still struggle because I have a two year old crying and holding onto me the whole time no matter what, I still feel I got what I set out for. And my sis-in-law, (isn’t she to die for gorgeous??? In person, too!), was gracious enough to agree she loved them and would let me finally share something I believe in.
So in short, I want to share my first attempt at a family other than my own and a mini-shoot. As a hobbyist, I can finally say I now know what I would like to be doing in my professional life (if I didn’t have three babies)! 😉 Shooting family and friends!!! Providing them with what I see when I look at them. Which is all the beauty in the world! This is now my passion and I hope to improve greatly. Who knows, someday maybe I will get the nerve and time to start something??? Until then, here’s a slide show of some of my favorite shots. The little 2 year old spunky brunette is my daughter Mattelyn and the 4 year old cutie pie is my niece Chayse and the 2 year old handsome man is my nephew Ryder.
I still have A LOT of work, but I am happy with where I’ve come in two years and I wanted to share with any of you that may be on this same journey – maybe we can exchange ideas!!! Any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated. And, I need more practice!
XO ~ Stephanie