Tuesday, July 30, 2013

She Took a Picture of What??

by Kelly


“Why is she taking a picture of that ugly, old boat?”


That’s what my dear friend, Suzanne, was thinking while I was standing there taking pictures.

She confessed this to me on the phone one day. It had only been a week or so after we got back from our vacation to St. John and I had finally gotten around to sharing a few of my photos on my blog.  But when she saw that photo in context with the rest of the photos of the adventure that day, she said, “I totally get it.” And that simple comment...even to this day....well, I’m not sure if she could possibly know what a confidence booster it was to me at the time.

Well so that vacation was two years ago.  I’d had my fancy new DSLR camera for about a year and had just scratched the surface of photography.  This photo would have been before any of my Big Picture Classes so it’s not really the greatest photo.  But it was there….the desire to capture not just the highlights of our trip, but the experience.  The details.  The heart.  The story.
 
So fast forward two years and as I’m putting together this blog post, I am knee deep in laundry and unpacking from our vacation to Destin.



And as you would probably imagine, I took a lot of photos.  One rainy afternoon while we were at the beach, I was going through my photos.  My dear friend Carrie was sitting next to me and she said, “What makes your photos so interesting is your point of view.” Which is just about the nicest compliment she could have given me.


I have to admit, it was a conscious decision on my part…before we even left for our trip I had decided that I was going to leave my inner critic at home. This time I was going to shoot differently. I mean, ok sure, I took lots of photos of the beach and the water and of us having fun.  But I also wanted to capture photos of things that spoke to me. Little details that touched my heart. Even if they weren't necessarily “beach” or “vacation” photos.  You know what I mean?



I think this, for me, has been a defining area of my journey in photography. Learning to shoot for myself.  I think being a ‘scrapbooker’ definitely had an impact on my photography.  Especially in the beginning…mostly shooting to preserve the precious memories of my family and friends.  And to some degree there will always be a part of me that shoots with that goal in mind – preserving, documenting, celebrating.


But in the last year or so, I’ve slowly started allow myself to take a break from the memory-keeping mentality .  Finding the confidence to capture the light as well as the memories.  Find the heart in the story – the way I see it.  It’s been so liberating. And can I tell you…it’s brought me so much joy.



So I’d love to know…how has your perspective changed or evolved over the years. Do you ever struggle with finding voice in your photography?  And more importantly, do I have any volunteers to come help me fold clothes??

Until next time, Kelly

16 comments:

Carol said...

Kelly, I just love the way you write, to say nothing of your images. You are always so witty and interesting to read! And, although I probably knew this about you and forgot, I was surprised that you consider this new, and that your camera is 2 years old -I assumed from your talent that y ou had been doing this all your life . My story, although not growing from scrap booking, is similar, and I totally get the feeling of joy from finding a passion that feeds your soul. I'm happy for you.

Carol said...

Ps- that first picture would be fun to play with in one of the painters apps

Karen Main said...

Kelly I am new over here and get so excited every time something new is posted. I love your perspective, the way you present your images and your words. The complete package for me thanks and I will be back for more.

Peggy said...

I really liked this post. I shows the difference between a photographer and just someone who stands there and takes a picture. I love the point of view. It encourages me to not just look at the people in the photos but the small details of life.

heyjudephotography said...

You have come such a long way in such a short time and I'm glad you are shooting from the heart. It's important to have those family photos, most definitely...but it's all the other photos that bring out our creative side. My family probably can't remember when I haven't had a camera in my hand and shooting pics. My Mom says, "Judy takes a picture of EVERYTHING!" Haha She's right! Whatever moves me. Glad to be on this journey with you!

Summer said...

Love this, Kelly!

AFishGirl said...

The title! I love it! Hears to hearing your heart's call on what to shoot. Hooray!!!!!!

Jeanne said...

Great shots! and love also trying to capture the moment, and the experience in addition to just recording the trip. Really makes you remember the feel of the time, which is what I love about photography!

Cathy H. said...

I'm with Pam! Love the title! Also, love this post and your images! I also started photography about 2 years ago. My husband is just now starting to "get" the fact that taking pictures of unusual things in unusual ways makes me happy! Shooting from the heart, that's what it's all about!

terriporter said...

Such a wonderful post, Kelly, and one that I know we can all identify with. When my kids were young, I took photos of everything they did, trying to preserve their childhoods for them. Now I shoot more for myself and like you, I do shoot some strange things! But it fills my soul and makes me happy. Your photos are beautiful and I'm glad you had such a great vacation! Looking forward to seeing you in nine days!

leigh said...

This post resonates with me! It's those details of the experience that you want to remember. You will always remember that you had a good time, but seeing the wet footprints or the Sooners hat :) just makes it that much more!

Dotti said...

That inner critic ... we all have one. This is also a grand way to remind us all what we need to remember each time we pick up our cameras: shoot what makes our hearts sing! Your photos are evidence of your wonderful vacation last week. I'm so happy for you! And thanks for sharing these beautiful photos and memories with us ...

Cathy said...

Kelly, this just spoke to me so, having just come back from the beach myself with two friends who are always wondering.. "what is she taking a photo of now!" We have to do this for us and you could not have said it better. I love the one of the back of your daughters hair, in her hat. Oh, I love them all. Great post! xxoo

Katie said...

You gotta shoot what you love to shoot, doesn't matter what anyone else says. When my husband took me up to Kansas City earlier this month for a surprise getaway, I found a set of beautifully tiled stairs. Without even hesitating, I flopped down on my belly on the sidewalk and started shooting away. I probably got all kinds of crazy looks, but you know what? I'll never see those people again, so it doesn't really matter. : )

cheryl Crotty said...

This is a beautiful post Carol...the photo's do tell the story and your compositions are wonderful...I love the one of the girls hair...
I have also reached the point where I shoot for myself...I really love nature photography and feel comfortable with that...taking the still life with Kim though has taught me so much more and especially the editing..
Your photo's are always a treat to view...

Kelly said...

Beautiful post I think many of us can relate to. Gorgeous photos. Love the boat shot. And who doesn't love the sugar white sands of Destin!?

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