photography, artist

Image Explorations - Part 2 - Belonging

I've been waiting 
For my dreams to
Turn into something
I could believe in

How can I even attempt to express what this workshop has meant to me thus far? I feel myself becoming a photographer, melting into it, understanding that I belong here, totally ready to embrace it not only as a career, but as a passionate love affair that will get me through the rough points. I kept thinking as time pressed me forward towards this week - what is consistent about my life? What have I always done, who have I always been with few exceptions? I kept feeling insecure about the choice to be a photographer, feeling like other people got me here and I didn't know who I was in it. Sure that I wanted it, but insecure anyway.

The answers I found about myself and who I have always been are probably unsurprising to many who know me, but what surprises me the most is how uniquely qualified I am to be here, to be doing this. I had a lady tell me today that I had a really nice way about me, I set people at ease, that I treat my models as people and she had watched me working and enjoyed it. High praise, and I take it humbly. I feel like I found the last piece of the puzzle here, and now I just need to live in the scene I found there.

I just keep looking at my work from the last two days with uncontrollable slackjaw. I find myself taking photos that are so far from what I normally take and still feeling like they are uniquely mine in so many ways. I belong here. This is me, I am finding myself here among dozens of others, finding that I fit in here like I've never fit in anywhere else. It shocked me. I have never felt like I fit in anywhere, with any group of people, until I came here and felt like I'd found a niche.

So for me this is beautiful
A brand new thought
And a brand new world

Our first speaker, Dane Sanders, was inspiring, challenging, and totally radical man who wears mismatched socks. My workshop leader for the week is a vibrant man named Scott Robert Lim (who constantly refers to himself as Chinese and therefore cheap) whose excellent and engaging curriculum has taught me enough skills in two days to upgrade my work the same amount that years of process might have touched on but not perfected. I've been given the tools, the building blocks I needed. Being taught how to pose was the kicker... Scott is hilarious and upbeat, ambitious, and also a very, very good teacher. Invaluable. Someday I'd like to take one of his international intensive workshops...

Today a Nikon rep who is here with a Victoria photo store took it upon himself to teach three of us Nikon shooters how to use our command flash system. I feel like I have a new camera and a new flash. It was totally awesome. He was even able to explain to me some of those high falutin terms that people keep throwing around that I had no idea about and no time to look up in the barrage of new information.

The evening of the first day we got our first batch of teaching. Morning of the second day was more teaching, then our class shot all afternoon on campus and all evening in Victoria with models. (Not enough models, but thankfully I had a sharp eye and got them often enough to feel almost satisfied.) I have stunning photos from yesterday that I am in love with. And they're just fresh of the presses with me barely understanding the concepts we've learned and having to work for it. I'm planning on shooting every possible moment when I get back to Saskatoon, developing a new portfolio with the unique look I want to refine for portraiture. It will be a lot softer then most of what I've taken here, but I have a vision for it and that's what counts.

If you want to see what I've been working on, my latest edits from the shoots we did yesterday, you can find some on the public Facebook link
here.
 

My roomate in Strathcona (the dorm I'm staying in) is a pleasant and bubbly girl and we really enjoy each other. Couldn't have asked for a better roomie here.

In short, everything is awesome, I am excited beyond measure, there is a barbecue cooking for supper tonight, and I now have to go to a vendor expo without spending any money. Torture.

But I have grand plans for the future. I really need a Mac system, I'm going to try and buy a Mac mini within a year. I have fallen in love with the fun of LensBabies and would rather have one of those than a Holga by far. I played with a little fisheye lens from a friend and realized that if I don't buy a fisheye or a wide angle soon I will hate myself because I have been in love with them since my film days and they totally go with the whimsical vision I have for my future photography. Also, I really need a standard Nikon 35mm for portraits, I miss that from my film days. Sometime soon I need a Drobo (fancy multi-hard-drive backup device). So that's my wishlist for oh, the next two years or so. Here's hoping that works out well for me.

I am loving this, and hope to bring the photography experience into Victoria with me.

Quotes:

"Community is a fragile thing, it has to be re-invented every day." - Dane Sanders (in general conversation. He's that cool.)
My instructor, Scott Robert Lim, about a man with a woman in a photograph: "He's just the parsley on the side."
"If you shoot someone like that, they look like a PEZ dispenser." - Scott Robert Lim
  • Current Mood: bouncy imitating the masters...
  • Current Music: Color is my music this week
Gee - I wish I could access Facebook from work, but I'll take a look tonight.

I envy you this opportunity, and I hope that it leads you towards where you want to get.
My instructor saw your lilypad pic one day as I was surfing LJ and really liked it, and he's big time, so congrats =)