If you’re thinking, “Part 2?” well, I wrote Part 1 a long time ago! SO if you need a refresher, go and read part one. To sum it all up though, I picked up a camera my freshman year of college. I got a job with a wedding photographer and I second shot without EVER seeing my images. I learned how to act at a wedding. I learned to respect the photojournalistic style at weddings. So what came next?
Toward the end of my time with Rob Garland Photographers, I had a few conversations with the associates. I wanted to know more. I felt like I was in a rut and didn’t know how to grow any more. But I was about to graduate so I decided to take a few photography classes. My first class was at NOVA. It was a “how to use your camera” class. I knew how to use my camera, but this class really gave me power. I suddenly had so much more confidence with my camera. I could flip to Manual mode and not feel scared! The second class I took was at JMU – black and white film photography. This class taught me to SLOW DOWN. My images weren’t anything to write home about, however, I loved how the class made me step out of my comfort zone and ask people if I could photograph them. It was really fun!
Somewhere in there, in 2009, I started a blog. It wasn’t anything great at all. And I made sure people knew I was growing. I named my blog, Open During Renovations. I’m still really proud of that first big step. I posted the images THUMBNAIL size, as you’ll see if you check it out, probably because I was scared how they would look if they were any larger. It was where I posted my first wedding. The wedding I did by myself. All on my own. I booked it, wrote up a contract, took money, rented more gear, and shot it. The first few weddings fell into my lap. I was still in school, but friends would talk and people knew I was interested and working for a wedding photographer. I think my first wedding I charged $700.
And this is the scary part of the blog post. Where I post images from my first “on my own” weddings and sessions. I look at these, and I’m proud. Scared to post, but proud that I have them. They represent this girl, who had NO business in the photo business. But she made the best of the knowledge she had, and pushed herself forward.