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Monday, January 24, 2011

Cameras and "Cawfee Tawk" Tuesday- The First Lesson!

Hello and Happy Tuesday! If you are here with me, reading this first post of Cameras and Cawfee Tawk, then you either (A) own a camera and hope to get some tips on how to create better pictures with it, (B) don't care about taking better pictures with your camera, but felt like a cup of coffee (pronounced cawfee!!) with your old Lawng Island girlfriend, or (C) are my mother or mother-in-law and care nothing about photography but love me anyway! Hi Moms!

Now... if you fall into category A, then I sure hope you will find these weekly lessons useful, easy to apply, and best of all, FUN! After all, why bother if it's not going to be fun? And therein lies my first lesson.

Yes, my hope is that in time we will get to chit chat about shutter speeds, and depth of field (WHAT?) and how to best compose your shot, or how to get that awfully cheesy smile off your kids' faces, but before we get to all of that, I think we need to start with the most important lesson of all: if you love it, shoot it.

Now I've shot a lot of photos over these past few years and I can tell you that this might be the most important point to consider. If you truly want to love photography, then you have to think about what it is that you love, what it truly is that makes you who you are, and go out and capture that.

Maybe you love architecture or history. Go out and shoot- there are gorgeous chapels, homes, and buildings all around you. I for one, have not found a love for architectural photography, as seen from this very boring shot below. Nope, not lovin' it- despite how much I love this building. (Scott and I were married in it!)

Or maybe you have a love of creation, of nature, and of all things outdoors. Maybe you step foot outside regardless of the season and see God's beauty all around you. Go out and shoot! There is so much beauty out there. Shoot one flower...

... or shoot them all! Again, though I love nature and am in awe over God's beautiful handiwork, I find no love for nature photography. My images always seem to be lacking something.

Or maybe it's home or memories, or special mementos that you treasure, and this is what you want to shoot. Head outside your front door, walk a few steps forward, and turn around. Look at your home, where you make your memories. Find ways to capture those memories.

It might take you a while to find out what you love. But take your time. There's no rush. There's no end. That's the great thing about photography- it's just a journey, like life. I can tell you this though. If you go out and shoot, without knowing what you it is you're passionate about, what it is you truly love, then you'll find your images falling short, and you'll find your interest in photography fading fast. For me, it didn't take long to realize that while my nature and architectural images did not do it for me, any time I got a pair of eyes in front of my camera, I came to life. The minute I start shooting people, I am happier, more alive, doing what I am meant to do, and that is why those images are the best images I've got.

So go out there. Take some time. Find out what (or who!) you love, and shoot that. And shoot it more and more. You'll find there's nothing better than shooting what you love. And hey, do me a favor- send me a comment and let me know what you discover!

And as for me, these eyes and these faces do it for me every time!

See you next week, when we'll talk about finding the light- where should you put that window?

Pin It!

9 comments:

jennifersimonette said...

Oh my goodness I am so happy that you have decided to do this blog! Lesson number 1. Right on! You are absolutely right...if you photograph things that speak to your heart you are getting a guarantee that you will produce something amazing! I love the unconventional family portraits. I love that it's O.K. for a silly face or not all body parts are where they "should" be!! I'm very excited to follow your blog. You take amazing photos!! Thanks for having me! Jenn

Frost Photography said...

Jen!

Thanks for this, it really gets me motivated to get out there and just shoot!

courtneyc said...

Yay!! I am so excited, this is exactly what I have been waiting for! I'd love a lesson or two from you in person, but this is indeed the next best thing. You have been a source of motivation and inspiration for me. Your advice, comments on my photos and encouragement have taught me so much about photography AND myself. Thank you! I look forward to learning from you! :)

Jen Lebo said...

Thanks everyone! Jennifer, I love unconventional family portraits too- especially with my crazy family. It's real life- it's what we remember!
Carmen, glad to be inspiring. Get out and shoot girl!
Court, love it! You are definitely one of those photographers who blow me away- you shoot nature, outdoors, things that I can never do- and you bring life to it all. You inspire me! Love our common path! Someday we'll shoot together!

tigerwife64 said...

Jen,
These are wonderful thoughts and examples! Can't wait for you to tell more about how to set your camera to take the natural light pictures! I am, like you, most excited by people pictures. Dick, of course, is the nature and architectural photographer in our house, although I do a tiny bit of nature. Love that you are doing this blog!!!
Anne

Tara said...

Great Jen! Love the new born packages! I saw on a blog that a girl had her photographer come to the hospital and shoot the birth and moments afterwards...NOTHING graphic but photos of mom, dad and baby. Precious and priceless. Something to think about..I'll email you a link to the blog! Love you! Can't wait to see ya, Pickle!

Catherine said...

So excited for this! I am the WORST photographer. I took a photo class in high school and it was painful and I think I've blocked it out :) I'm quite sure you will be the best teacher!

Laura said...

I love reading your blog!! This time in my life, I am def. into taking pics of Dogs!! Also, I love nature too, but I'm not sure how good I am!!
I can't wait to read more!! I'm so excited! You are awesome!! =D

Jen Lebo said...

Thanks Laura- your dogs sure are cute! Anne- you sure have adorable subjects to work on! Cat, you've got FOUR! And Tara, I so so so want to shoot a birth now! Truly! If any of you are interested, subscribe to my blog and you'll be alerted to any new posts! See the link on the right hand side of the blog! I'm already working on the next Cawfee Tawk lesson! Yay!

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