Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Some daily inspiration from Jessica Claire

I subscribe to an email list from Jessica Claire. She's an extremely well-known photographer in CA who just HAPPENED to grow up in Raleigh, NC. Just like me! And...she went to NC State...just like my brother. Anyway, I find her work truly inspirational and I just LOVE perusing her website.

Yesterday, she sent out an email to the list-serve and I just had to post part of it. Her message is applicable to us all, no matter what career you've chosen. Find what you are best at and give it all you've got!

"Early on in my career as a photographer, I learned that other photographers were far better than I was both technically and creatively. It seemed that no matter what I did, someone else was already two steps ahead of me. As time went by and I really started learning more about photography myself, I realized that having other people be better than me was not discouraging but inspiring! As I looked at various websites and blogs, I started to understand that the photographers I looked up to the most were the ones who excelled at something specific, such as off-camera lighting, clean portraits, or quirky poses. I started thinking about the person that I was becoming and which aspects of my personality I wanted to play up as the strongest in a first impression with a new client. The more I would review the images I came home with Saturday after Saturday, the more the shots with flare and backlighting would jump out at me. "These are the kinds of images I want to make", I would say to myself.

So I did.

Week in and week out, I practiced with backlighting and flare until I knew that I would be able to shoot those kinds of images any time that I wanted and do it the BEST. I may never be an expert at off-camera lighting, or clean portraits, or quirky poses, but I had finally found something that really resonated with me. Not only was the time of day right before sunset my favorite, but I learned to control that kind of light to give me exactly the effect I was looking for in camera. Over time, shooting consistent images of that nature became the thing that I do best, and ultimately became my "signature" shots.

What kind of shots are your signature? What are YOU best at creating (hint: what kinds of images do you LOVE creating?)"

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I'm a photographer located in the Washington, DC area, but I'm willing to travel. You may contact me at katherineklegin [at] yahoo.com

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