Thursday, June 11, 2009

so many things!

I know I am way behind on blogging so I figured I will start to catch up. I will try to cover a couple of days here :) So last Friday I left for the workshop and we had a meet and greet that evening at Me Ra and Brian's house. It was so much fun! We had delicious thai food and sat out on in their fabulous back yard. They were so warm and inviting and I swear I have not laughed that hard in a really long time. It was so cool to meet all of these other women and hear their stories. I cannot believe that I have no pictures of all of this - go figure!
The next day we started bright and early I left Jen's at 8 AM and the workshop began at 9. Breakfast and Lunch were catered and we learned all about the basics of our cameras and basics of composition and how to make people look their best. We also learned a little about each of the ladies in the group. We were all at different levels and if was fun to see where everyone was at in their journey. After lunch we split into groups of 5 and met our first victims! We had 4 mom and baby models to shoot and before we got started, Me Ra asked them to tell a little about themselves. Most were former workshop attendees and photographers - talk about intimidating! When she introduced the Mom that my group would be shooting, she told us about how special baby Finley was and why. Marianne (Finely's Mom) had been through a miscarriage last year while expecting her first baby. She and her husband were devastated and sad. But now they have sweet Finley and he is their little miracle baby. I think from that point I was just way too sidetracked.
Having gone through that I wanted to make sure that I got some amazing shots for her and really wanted her photos to be special. Knowing what I would want, I knew they had to be perfect.
Needless to say, we were shooting in a hotel (a fabulous hotel by the way) and with all of us around it was quite crowded. It just turned out that my entire group (all 5 of us) were shooting with a 50 mm lens and so things were tricky from the start. We didn't know each other that well yet and we had trouble working as a team so we were all trying to get our own shots and with a 50 mm lens you have to be constantly moving to be at the right distance so there were other peoples feet in all of my shots (and mine in theirs I would imagine.) I was SO FRUSTRATED. I left the first day feeling really irritated and just knowing that I didn't get anything that this mom would like. And that I totally sucked as a photographer.

That night Me Ra and Brian took us all out to dinner at this awesome Thai (total coincidence) restaurant. I had never really tried a lot of Thai before so it was so fun to taste new things. At dinner I sat across from one of the other girls from the workshop that I hadn't really gotten to know that day and we started talking. I asked her if I was the only one that felt like a total loser after todays shoot and she said that she was SOOOOOO feeling the same way. Total frustration. As we got to talking we realized that both of us had been through miscarriages recently and it was hard to concentrate after hearing Marianne's story. After a while we were sitting there talking and bawling our eyes out as we talked about our experiences. She is amazing and I had so much fun with her. Then we were able to say "we are not talking about this anymore" and just relax and have a fabulous and fun dinner.
On the way back to Jen's that night I was feeling better and realized how many great friends I was making.
The next morning we started at 8:30 and Me Ra had us open with a writing excersize about how we were processing everything so far. Afterward we shared what we had written and as I started talking - I started the middle of a photography front of all of these people I just met. If you know me you know that I am not a big fan of the "public cry". I can usually hold it together pretty well. But I realized that my frustration from the day before was not about everyone else being in the way or the wrong lighting. It was about me and how close I felt to this womans story and frustrated I was because of this crazy expectation. To my surprise, all of my new "seattle sistas" were crying as well! It was all hormonal up in there! They shared how they were frustrated as well and what they had learned about themselves during the first day. It was so great to not feel alone.
The second day was amazing and our shoot was fantastic. We met another former workshop attendee and her family (so cute) and my group worked on their shoot. I got to shoot Ty and his Dad and it was a total blast. This family has been on the Oprah show! After hearing about how they took in their three nieces, Nate Berkus remodeled their home!!! You have probably saw it....they now have a fabulous house with a separate building/playroom that she can see from the kitchen window because it rains so much that you can't often play outside!!!!!
Anyways, that day we learned a ton about metering (which is what I really needed to work on) and it is so easy! I was so sad to leave all my new best friends, and it has been a little rough getting back to real life.
I was so surprised to see that I actually did get some shots of Marianne and Finley and I hope she likes them. Here are some of the photos I captured during the workshop.
I hope that was a good description. Feel free to shoot any questions my way and I will pass along all that I learned to whomever would like to know! Don't want to get too technical on this post!


Melisa said...

Sarah the workshop pictures you took are amazing! You did great! I am glad you wrote about the workshop I need to do the same. I don't want to forget any of it. It is so weird that workshop totally changed me not only as a photographer but as a person. You ladies who were there are the only ones that will ever understand it. I have tried to explain it to people and nobody gets it. Pretty awesome and empowering!

Calley said...

Love your pictures my pet. I'm so glad you had a great time!