The last few weeks for photography have been quite dissatisfying for me. I had blurry photos of my niece riding horses, crappy composition in photos of my friend’s daughter and an overall lack of enthusiasm for shooting the bleak winter weather scene outside my front door. I was in a photography rut. So when I joined my meet-up group in Pennsylvania to shoot the Christmas displays at Longwood Gardens, I was hell bent on making some images that would restore my faith in my photography abilities.
Longwood Gardens is truly an impressive place for photographers and non-photographers alike, but shooting flowers is really not my subject of choice. I much prefer street scenes, portraits and travel photography; however, I look for every opportunity to hone my skills and challenge myself. I’m still finding my “photography” voice and developing my style.
I recently read Understanding Exposure by Bryan Peterson. In the book, he talks mainly about using the manual functions on the camera to make correct and creative exposures. I decided that this would be the day that I learned the camera’s manual functions. I shot these photos at Longwood Gardens using only the manual techniques that he teaches in his book.
To be honest, it was an exhausting challenge. My head was spinning after this shoot. I do have a renewed sense of self and am proud of the outcome. But I still have a sense that something is missing. These images are aesthetically pleasing, but they lack an emotional connection. They are just pictures to me. I’m looking for that emotion…that connection. I don’t want to shoot to shoot. I want to FEEL something when I see these images. Maybe I’m still in a rut….
What is your photography style? How did you develop it? What was your a-ha moment?