What you can do today
I get this statement from clients, friends, and strangers all year long. Honestly, there’s not a week that goes by that someone doesn’t ask me how. Until I start classes(yes, I’ve thought about it), I’d like to give you a few tips to start now. Things you can do today to be the memory keeper for your family.
1) Stop staging your kids for pictures. I’m serious. Yes, get that image you want of everyone looking at the camera smiling, but then turn it a different angle. I want to remember the nitty gritty of this season of my life. I want to remember that my 6 year old cries because her shoes feel funny, her hair is in her face, and her tears because her brother won’t play with her. When you look back on your life, remember it all…not just the pretty pictures.
2) Hear my cries…DO NOT BUY A NEW CAMERA UNTIL YOU KNOW THE CURRENT ONE YOU HAVE LIKE THE BACK OF YOUR HAND. Here’s what I mean: Do you know what every setting on your camera does? How does it affect your image? What if you stand back further from your child, does that change how it looks? How far can you push your camera in a low light situations without using flash?
“But Mellisa, I need a new camera. One that takes better pictures.” What if I told you that I started out with a very very basic camera. What if I told you I could produce the same amount of wow with your camera than I can do with my own? You’d probably call me out on it, but I can tell you that I would give it my very best shot. Why do people(that aren’t in photography business) usually upgrade their camera? Because they don’t know how to properly use the one they have. They think that new camera is going to produce pro like images, but in all reality some of the BEST images I have ever seen are with the most basic camera ever! You know why? Because they learned everything about light, shadows, ISO, Shutter Speed, and Aperture they could get their hands on. Don’t know anything about those previous subjects…learn them. Those are the fundamentals of taking an amazing picture.
3) Take a new picture every single day. Do you know what I tell people the #1 thing that changed my business? When I started a 365 project. The gist of it is that you take an image every day for 365 days. You can share it, save it, tuck it away, but it makes you think outside the box. There are going to be some days when you haven’t thought about taking your picture for the day until it is way past dark. What are you going to do then? You’re going to figure it out. You’ll figure out if you give your kids a flashlight and a book that you have enough light. You going to figure out that it may be during crazy dinner time, but they are all at the table and that’s the image you want to remember. You’ll find pockets of time that you would have never realized you had to capture a memory. It forces you to become your family’s historian.
4) Join an online group. Find a tribe you can share with and have an open heart to constructive criticism. I am who I am today by not only learning everything I could, but because of another person telling me what I needed to work on. I am still learning every single day.
5) Lastly, ClickinMoms has been my most cherished resource. I have taken multiple classes, but my biggest love is the forum. You can literally find an answer to any question you may dream up. You can post your images and get critiques. You can purchase breakout sessions. You can connect with like minded women in your area. The possibilities are endless. I am who I am from this community.