“Tiiiiin Roof! RUSTED!”

Shouted by Cindy Wilson of the 80s rock band, The B52s. The song came, instantly, to my mind after breaking out my photo gear after too many years of it collecting dust. A few weeks ago, as I scrolled through my latest attempt at “photography”, I kept sighing and then grumbling, louder and louder, until I finally closed my laptop in frustration.

This was about nine months after also capturing a few amazing Flamenco dancers during a Spanish festival here in Austin. Journalistic style is not my forté. I can capture ‘the moment’ and–I guess–my shots are decent. But I always want “the shot” and am incredibly hard on myself when I miss.

Approximately ten years ago, I was shooting regularly. My chief focus was portraiture. I control the light, the shadows, poses and angles. That is definitely when I shine brightest. I love faces. I love closeups. And I love finding someone’s best angle. Aside from individual projects, I had taken opportunities to do some wedding work, company headshots, a shoot with a dance company, and I even shot for a fitness/supplement ad. I expanded my lens collection and invested in strobe gear. I was growing as a hobbiest and I was happy.

Following a personal tragedy, however, I all but stopped photographing–well anything.

Not in my wildest dreams did I think I would lose the edge off of years of skill and timing. But here I am. It is a strange place to be and it feels awkward realizing my confidence is rocked. I now hold my camera and keep checking settings. Fidgeting. Checking. Sweating. Grumbling. Checking again.

The only way out is to keep shooting. New faces. New mistakes. Adjust. And shoot some more. So…in the meantime, here is a photo of my new baby, Ms. Pickles. (Vintage Minolta 50mm lens. Sony A57. Natural light. Living room floor.)

Cheers until next time!


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