One More Way To Express Myself?! s-w-e-e-t
Due to recent life changes, I will only be photographing on location. This means I can do portraits anywhere you want! At the beach, amusement park, muir woods, ANYWHERE! :) Think of the possibilities! Also... I'll be saving up for an underwater housing system soon! YAY! (who wants pictures underwater?! I DO!)
This last week, I found out that CPI (Sears Portrait Studio, and Walmart Portrait Studio) has officially closed their doors. I started photography in high school but as far as professionally, it was CPI that gave me the chance to shine. I was hired in 2003 as just holiday seasonal help and eventually became assistant manager, later to leave and come back as manager. I grew the most during these years. I learned so much about photography, business, customer service. A chunk of my heart is broken knowing that they are no longer in business. At the same time I have mixed feelings because this is an excellent time for all independent photographers (which really, it's about time.) :) I am grateful for all CPI gave and taught me; and believe me, it was a lot. Hands down the best thing I learned from them was outreaching; without this simple idea business cannot grow. It's the sunshine your plant needs. So CPI, this is a goodbye but really this is a Thank You. Thank you for showing a teenage girl that she could be the most amazing photographer. Thank you for telling that same girl that she could be a savvy business-lady. And thank you for allowing me to grow through excellent customer service. It's been the attribute that sets me apart from everyone else. Sears Portrait Studio will always be a part of who I am.
I cannot believe how incredibly small this world is! I was going through old sessions on my website and stumbled through some wedding albums...when I put 2 & 2 together I realized I've been photographing a past customer and somehow never put the connection together! Two years ago I shot their wedding and for the past few months, their new daughter and family for portraits. :) I'll be making her a surprise gift tomorrow and it shall be quite a funny conversation! I love life's little surprises like this!
So yesterday I was waiting to shoot a golf team when I thought of something... I wanted to be able to instantly upload a picture of a session I recently did to facebook (to build excitement for that customer and to say thanx in a fun way). I happened to have a bunch of random cords in my purse (usb (mini, micro, and 2.0) and tried hard to figure out how to get pictures off my standard sd card onto my android phone... alas it did not work. There are cords for charging and cords for transferring, which I knew but never tested. But the idea persisted, I wanted the freedom to be able to upload my gorgeous pictures no matter where I was! I happened to go to Best Buy last night and so I'm talking this poor girl's ear off when it dawned on both of us... Shoot on a micro inside an adapter and THEN put it in your phone etc.! So frantically we try to look for opened goods so we can experiment. Everything was sealed tight so I experimented when I got home. IT WAS FREAKING AWESOME! Not only did it work, it put it automatically in gallery where I found it super quick. I was able to edit it w/ instagram and upload as I saw fit. I also was nervous it'd do something to my other files but nope... it was just divine how flawless it worked! So now... I need more micro sd cards LoL because this cute 2 gb isn't gonna do much. I still have much experimentation to do...but I am SOOOO juiced! I can't believe I never thought of this before! OH! And for those looking for a good free photo editing app that doesn't harshly compress your photos... (cause instagram makes the file WAY too small) I suggest pixlr-o-matic (and now i will OFFICIALLY be buying the extras! YAY! ^_^ Did I mention I can upload pictures to zenfolio quicker?! It just gets better and better!
I have a ways to go in developing my personal style, but so far I can safely say I OFTEN unknowingly shoot with a diagonal (almost alwayz coming from the top left corner to the bottom right corner, and a lot of times from a horizontal image.) The only reason I'm thinking about this today is because I was talking with my good friend (who is really more like a sister to me than anything else) and we were discussing her style. She is an AMAZING photographer. And she too shoots with a line; instead of a diagonal, she has a straight line horizontally (usually through vertical images perfectly dividing the image.) Another style I have are extreme close ups. I can't seem to get enough of them! (obviously this is more flattering on babies than adults. i surely wouldn't want an extreme close up of my face!) :) Me and Lea (my sister from another mother) share this style attribute. We both do them, slightly different of course. She has this other characteristic where she vertically divides her face (when shooting portraits) with only one side showing. It's so hard to analyze your OWN style versus someone else's. Not entirely sure why. I know I prefer high contrast and usually warmer skin tones. I am fascinated with shadows and am barely starting to play with that. I adore vignettes and want them to look natural and from the lens (which I have much to experiment with.) I love the vintage look and the wide range of tones and looks that go with that. I LOVE square format. I love black borders, thin to medium thickness. I am a studio shooter, I want to control my lighting. I am starting to really understand direction and proper usage of movement and light working together. How important light is, it's the difference between good/bad, purpose/accident, art/snapshot.... Also, i prefer simple colored bkgs to patterned or busy ones. You should have seen my face the day I discovered colored gels on black backgrounds! LoL THAT was one of the best days of my life, hands down. LoL (vignetting + any color bkg. yes i squealed like a little girl!) It's interesting to think, I've spent most of my time mastering composition and framing, and now comes the lighting aspect. :) I'm so excited to be on this journey of self-expression and discovery. Photography, you give me a way to voice myself through creation; for this I am eternally grateful.