Navel gazers Anonymous

I was editing some photos last night (Of my delicious godson!) and decided that I mucked them up.

One eye was super sharp, the other not so much.

There was motion.

Focus was off ever so slightly rendering the image soft.

Yet, you know, his mama bear loved them.

It made me think of a piece of advice that I was given on my fabulous weekend – one of the women was saying that she couldn’t bear to part with any images of her kids (I know this feeling all too well!) and our teacher interjected to point out that clients feel the same way. Just because they don’t meet our exacting standards, clients do love images of their children. They’re special. So I edited anyway, packed my lessons away and gave them to mama bear.

Sometimes, we can be our own worst enemies. Learning to overcome the fact that my photographic work is not perfect and does not meet my standards is really, really, really frustrating! I can pick everything apart with the finest toothed comb and this does achieve some things, but often it makes me feel worse and not like picking up the camera. I’ve been holding my beautiful Olympus e-410 in my grubby paws for a mere two years and in that time I have improved sooooooooooooooo much! I have learned how to shoot manual, edit, about the rule of thirds – all sorts of things (And I got a 50mm lens. Yum). Why do I feel the need to turn this into a competition?

Tomato Boy

(My son’s eyes are actually green. An example of actions gone wild in my youth!)

I keep explaining to the boy that he isn’t going to be able to do everything the first time he tries, that some things take a lot of practice. In fact I read an article the other day that suggested you needed to do something for 10,000 hours in order to be an expert at it. My camera is up around the 10,ooo shutter actuation mark, now, and I am still learning, learning and learning. And that’s okay. We all do things differently, at our own pace… I just need to apply it!

The boy strikes again. 194/365

(From earlier in the year…. a more documentary approach to life)

So I am in the process of doing another course with Ms. Rosemeyer and am super excited to learn more. Ahhh bliss – admitting that I am not perfect, that I am still learning and the enjoyment is still present. Totally a load off my shoulders.

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One thought on “Navel gazers Anonymous

  1. I’m glad you found value in my post about Daniel Levitin’s book. One of his definitions of “expert” is “someone who is reached a high degree of accomplishment relative to other people. As such, expertise is a social judgment.”

    I don’t see the 10,000 hours (which is more a metaphor than an exact measure) as an absolute requirement. More important, I think, is doing–and especially, learning because you’re doing–that deepens your experience and awareness.

    As you say yourself, in two years you see great changes in your ability as a photographer. I don’t know how much time you’ve put into it, but practice, analysis, and reflection are what produces learning.

    Not to mention enjoyment.

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