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Photography Is My Passion
May 11, 2016
In September 2012, I decided to go back to school for an Associate's Degree in Graphic Design. At 51, I admit, it was daunting. I had loved school and did very well, but I wasn't sure this old dog could be taught any new tricks. I've always had a PC, and learning how to work on a MAC was intimidating enough, but learning all of these 'newfangled' programs was another story! Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Adobe Illustrator, oh my! I was fortunate to go to a school that still, unlike so many, has a dark room. I purchased a 35MM, 'Old School' camera on eBay and jumped right in.
I had no idea that I have a passion for Photography! I found working in the Dark Room fascinating and could spend HOURS changing and manipulating my photos until they were 'just right'. It sill blows my mind that I can manipulate my camera to create one photo and then change it even further by playing with time in the dark room. I loved it! And I was good at it! Two of my photos were chosen for the Hartford Art School exhibit, 'Community', and I had photos in the student shows at my college as well. I even had three photos accepted to compete in a juried show at the Farmington Valley Arts Center.
When I moved on to Digital Photography I wasn't sure I would like it as much. But I like it even more! I love the fact that I can shoot 800 photos then pick and choose the few I really like and simply delete those I don't . And I adore manipulating photos with Photoshop. I love the way I can create the perfect photo with just a few minor adjustments. I decided to do an Independent Study and earn a Certificate in Photography. And the passion continues. As a Web Designer, Photography adds an option that makes it even easier for me to customize websites. One client wanted new headshots for her website but didn't want to go to the expense of hiring another photographer. I was able to get some great pictures and take photos of her products to include on her website as well.
My passion, without question, is Nature Photography. I have loved all things animal all my life. I have fond memories of tuning in to 'Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom' on Sunday nights. And 'National Geographic Specials' were always amazing! Seeing animals in their natural habitat always gives me a thrill, whether it's the Great White Egret I've had the gift of capturing, or a little bunny munching on dandelions, like the little guy in the picture above. I was on the river one day, photographing the Great Egret and a Great Blue Heron and there was another photographer doing the same. When the Great Egret flew off I muttered a disappointed, 'Awww...' and the photographer replied, 'It's OK, I see them all the time. It's no big deal.' I remember thinking to myself, 'Wow, I hope I never have that attitude about ANY creature I have the gift of seeing. Literally every time I see one of Mother Nature's critters I'm like a little kid. I get SO excited and, if I have my camera with me, I cross my fingers and hope my animal friend will let me get the perfect shot.
With modern technology, photography is fascinating to me. There's nothing like getting back home, downloading my photos, and going through them to see what I got. 'Did that shot of that bird come out? Did I get him with his wings spread wide like I hoped? Maybe I've got one of him with that fish in his beak'. And, without fail, EVERY TIME I take a quick breath in when I see that PERFECT photo I wasn't sure I captured, or even knew I got! I recently had the pleasure of photographing birds of prey at an Earth Day Celebration. It was so exciting to capture photos of such stunning creatures, up close and personal! My son speculated that I probably had about 200 shots and I said, 'No probably more like 800!' When I got home I texted him, '695. Ha!' Of course, not all 695 were fantastic. But if I get ONE amazing photo I am one happy camper. I feel so blessed to do what I do. And, each day, I look forward to capturing as much of Nature's Beauty 'on film' as I possibly can.