Sunday, January 10, 2016

Finding the Perfection in Those Imperfect Photos


  One of my main goals over the past year was to try to improve my photography skills. When I really looked the layouts I loved and the instagram inspiration that mimicked the feelings I wanted to create on my pages, it always came down to amazing photography. So, I studied composition, learned a few new tricks, and surprised myself a little along the way.

My First Lesson: Shoot More and Pay Attention to the Details: What I learned was that I could get better at photography if I paid more attention to the small details. For example, my son is eight and plays on a little league baseball team. The customary shots of him in his uniform are of course always going to be there. But then I started to look closer and snapping without a worry as to how many images I could create. I shot photos in larger quantities to find hidden jems. Take a look at how I evolved.

My Second Lesson: Imperfection is OKAY.  Okay, what?!? Here all the things I reflected on edged towards improving my photography skills but yet I learned that imperfection is okay. I want my photographs to speak not just to me and the creative world out there but to my kids and my family as well. One day in California we spent the day playing in the waves at the beach. I was using my first lesson and shooting photos like crazy but just didn't feel I was getting that "perfect shot" that I wanted. The normal beach photos were fine...they documented our great day but the emotional draw was missing. That's when something happened. My 8 year-old son asked to take his own selfie with his brother. He looked at his brother and said "Let's make this epic!" because I never hand over my phone for picture taking. They got the most excited look on their face and started snapping away, making crazy noises and living it up. When I got my phone back, my gem of the day emerged. Taken by my son capturing him and his brother being boys. It is by far their favorite picture of the day. Every time they see it, they tell me how awesome and fun that day by the sea was for them. Just because I didn't take it or it didn't have the perfect composition or artistic feel didn't mean it didn't create the emotional response that I was looking for in my children. So, I learned it was okay to love those imperfect pictures if they spark the memories of your family to remember the true emotions of the day....because isn't that the whole point?

My Third Lesson: Step Back and Try a Different Angle. Okay, last lesson for today. This is an important one. This year, I learned to step back and try new, different angles. I crawled on the floor, I rested my phone on tabletops. I looked up, down, and all around! The perspectives are all so different but all tell a different part of the story or give a different point of view. But each of those things plays into the feel and the depth of the story that I want to tell. Your regular straight-on pictures are great but there is much more to the story to be discovered when you step back and try new angles. Just take a look at my son fishing....

Alright....three big lessons for me and a lot of new perspectives. My photography isn't perfect but I'm getting better which makes my stories more complete. As I step out of my comfort zone and look at new perspectives, I feel like the emotions that I want to portray become easier to show. I want my scrapbooks to be full of meaningful stories and memories that last my children their entire lifetime and so I want to give them the best pieces of these memories that I can.

I hope these tips help you to try something new or even embrace the imperfect!  Please leave a comment with your favorite photo tip or a picture that you are especially proud of yourself for capturing.

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