Alright readers. Im going to write a post, that hopefully will not offend past clients of mine as well as photographers. Or anyone for that matter. Not at all my intention of what I am about to write about. So keep that in mind :)
SO here is the deal.
Im a photographer.
Yes. Most know this…
I am a professional. So I consider myself :) – and years ago I did as well… but if I’m truly honest, I can now see that I WAS NOT then :) – just thought I was. Its just part of the growing process in this field I suppose. Thinking you are hot stuff when in reality you probably are far from it. I was far from it once. I still feel that way many days… and I do have so much more to learn in the field of photography.
One thing however that I am realizing, is my ability NOW to see and do what I want, the way I want…
When I started my business, one area I dug into was photographing newborns. Yet I remember… shoot… after shoot… after shoot, truly disliking the entire process that was involved with that sort of session. It felt so forced… and awkward.
People wanted props…. costumes… weird positioning of the baby… you know, yoga poses? Im sure you all have seen those. Their everywhere. People wanted babies balancing on beer bottles and other non-baby friendly objects… I think the only NON baby type object I honestly like are some baskets/bowls… but that be about it.
I remember feeling the pressure that I NEEDED to do those things and use those things, because that is what “other” photographers were doing.
Why did I feel the need to do what others did?
We all know that the original is always better than the copy.
Yet session after session I strived to do something and be someone in my photography, that I clearly was not.
It resulted in a “Newborn Fast”…. For almost a solid 2 years I steered clear any time someone asked me to do a newborn session. I wanted nothing to do with them….As cute and cuddly as those newborn babes were, the idea of doing those forced shots, hammered my creativity.
I have had SO many request the last year 1/2 to do newborn portraits. SO much so that I knew saying no would ultimately hurt my business… so many awesome new families contacting me to photograph their precious babes…. and yet part of me didn’t want too… because of that dread I had in the past with the “pressure” to be a “type” of photographer I wasn’t.
I shot a newborn yesterday… one of the most adorable and well mannered lil dudes Ive shot in some time… and he brought me a new hope into the world of newborn photography. While I have had a few other sessions prior to his that sparked this as well… his has won me over. Finally :)
I truly enjoyed my time with this family and photographing this baby… and while at times I felt that creative mental block hit me… I put into my mind, to just be me and do what I felt was naturally suitable for the situation I was in.
I love shooting in a families home… capturing moments on their sofa… in the nursery… nothing fancy… no big props… no weird yoga poses… just them and their precious baby…
To encourage those who are new to this business….
To be you.
Stop trying to be a photographer you aren’t…
Seek your own creativity.
One of the things I have found completely suicides my sessions, is when I browse other photographers work and attempt to “recreate it” – don’t do that. It honestly never works for me. EVER.
Be who you are. Don’t hide your personality… don’t hide your life from your clients either. I love being able to tell my clients I am a mother of 4 amazing boys… and that my husband is a Cop/Pastor :) – and so on. I love being genuine with them and hopefully helping them feel comfortable around me… which in the end makes for a better session and better relationship with the client.
Hopefully this made some sense. Forgive me for the lack of blogging. Life is kicking my tail these days.
*And to my friend Rebecca, who may read my blog still ;-) – I love love love Kenna’s newborn pics, even if we did shove her into a strawberry and let her cry LOL!!!*
*To those who don’t know TOUCHED PHOTOGRAPHY *the photo at the beginning* was my old PHOTO NAME I used. A client told me one time that it made them think of the song “I TOUCH MYSELF.” Weeks later, I rebranded and changed my entire name and business site. So learn from me.. Just use your name ;-) SO much easier.
You btw can see some more photos from this baby’s session on my photo blog :) HERE