I am a firm believer in constantly educating myself. In my opinion, there is no better way to hone your craft and give your skill a bump than to constantly strive to be the BEST. For me, I take online seminars and participate in interactive workshops, work hands-on with my peers, follow industry trends and I follow the work of many world-renowned photographers and artists.
Last night, I was sitting on my couch reading my RSS feeds and admiring the work of one photographer in particular who lives practically a world away from me. I commented to my husband that she was really, really good and I have such respect for her work. He looked at me and said, “Yes, she is good, but she’s not better than you. She’s just different.”
After I finished being embarrassed by the very sweet compliment, that’s when it hit me. What does being the best mean? Is it a universal term? My husband’s understanding was obviously different than mine. Did he think that I was admiring this photographer because I wanted to create the same artwork? For me, being the best doesn’t mean being better than everyone else – it means being MY best. The work of other photographers is inspiring to me BECAUSE they use their talent to create a unique image with it’s own feel, warmth or coldness, emotion, and style…and it’s NOT the same as anyone else’s.
That got me thinking. What makes MY style my own?
When I’m photographing a client, my main goal is to capture their emotion and personality…those special little moments that mean more than everything else combined. As I looked back through my blog, the emotion between kids and their parents…between lovers…between many generations stared back and at me and I felt that THIS is one of the main aspects of my style. My images are bright and bold because I feel that this further highlights the magnitude of the emotion in the images. I often use depth of field to tell a story. I focus (and I don’t mean, focus with my camera) on the eyes, as I truly do believe that they are the windows to the soul.
When I say that I want to be the BEST, what does that REALLY mean to ME?
I think it is best described in that moment when I glance down at the LCD on my camera during a photo session and feel that moment of exhilaration, that moment of adrenaline, that moment of heartwarming emotion when I see that I have captured a moment truly and completely and I get to present that priceless memory to my client. I think I get just as emotional as the client. And I love that – it’s the best part about being a photographer.
Have I mentioned that I’m a hopeless romantic?