Appreciating where you are.

In between culling + editing fun wedding photos (people's dancing faces make me ridiculously happy), mailing off film to be developed + curating material for my first ever Share Sesh next week (woot woot!  Now, try to say that 5 times fast), I took a minute to reflect on where I've come from, camera in tow.  When my consultation yesterday asked me how long I had been shooting, I had a hard time answering because the lines are so blurred.  In general?  Freelance?  For weddings?  I honestly couldn't remember.  And pulling together insightful and inspiring material to help mentor another photographer left me reflecting where I could claim I started off--and logging into my flickr account. Inputting my user credentials, my intentions were to head all the way back to the beginning.  The haunting, laughable, measly beginning.  I planned to present several images from the start of my photography 'career' and say "hey!  Look how TERRIBLE these are, and then I thought I was pretty decent!  See, we are start somewhere!".  Going as far back as my first post, I found myself shocked at my initial response:

8 years later and these image aren't half bad.  Kind of good, in fact.  Sure, there is some killer tilt and selective coloring here and there, but moreso, there's heart.  And drive.  And passion.  And a lack of perfection.  Images taken with a Canon Rebel and kit lens taken as a true amature I somehow find now, in my career as a wedding photographer inspiring.

The truth is this:  appreciate where you are.  Every moment of it.  Your changes in style.  What you feel is your rinky dink camera.  Your exhaustive efforts in trying to create the perfectly colored scene.  In your own eyes, right now, you will most likely never find the perfect balance, look, or photo.  And that's the beauty of it.  If we were ever truly satisified with our work, we would become complacent.  Stagnant.  Finding no real need to reach for more.  So let go of the ideals of the future, open your eyes, and shoot it as you see it today.  Because tomorrow, you may look back and find yourself admiring it.

 

and, if you care to laugh a little, my flickr account--where I learned a TON about photography, the glory that is a nifty fifty lens, and then....actions.

Then, after you've read some of my exceptionally emo titles, you can giggle + apply this.