I remember saving my babysitting money and going with my dad to pick out my first camera when I was 14: a little Cannon AE-1. I loved spending the time with my dad learning about aperture and shutter speeds and how to choose which film to use for different projects. Fast forward 4 cameras later (still have that little Cannon!) and I still enjoy learning the technical aspects of a camera. I joke I like taking pictures so I use the right side of my brain occasionally (pretty sure my sister, Tessa, got all the creative brains) since I am definitely a left brained scientist.
I struggled for a long time to figure out where I belonged in the photo taking world. I didn’t think I could be taken seriously as a photographer if I didn’t take pictures of everything, for everyone. Weddings, families, formals, whatever. And then I charged pennies for taking time off work to shoot and then spend all my extra time editing a project I wasn’t always especially excited about, wishing I could afford a better lens and work on projects I was interested in, not just because someone was willing to pay me $30 (!) for a DVD of pictures. I’ve since learned that it’s okay to have a hobby. A hobby I don’t have to perfect at, or even better than anyone else. I’ve found a whole community of people who just like taking pictures.
A long time ago, back with Facebook was first being rolled out to students at Universities outside Harvard, a guy started a group called something like, Photographers: the Inspired and Aspiring. Scott Jarvie, the founder of the group, has gone on to become a pretty successful photographer. For a few years he hosted a “Jarvie” walk where a bunch of his friends and other people…I don’t even know how that whole community got to know each other…would spend a few days walking around taking pictures together. They didn’t have one this last spring because of Scott’s Faith in America project, but I did go in 2013 and really enjoyed meeting everyone. I was a little timid at first, I’ve never wanted to be seen as that amature trying so hard to come up with something creative but everything comes out so cliche. As the day went on I didn’t find any judgement, just people with everyday jobs (some were pro photogs) who were just taking pictures because it made them happy. I’ve followed a lot of them on Google+ and have been so inspired by the pictures they post and hope to someday return the favor.
We went a lot of different places, what I chose to post are from walking around Scott’s grandpa’s, uh, farm? I’m not sure what to call it, but it was a great rusty place to poke around. We finished up at the Holi Festival at the Radha Krishna Temple in Spanish Fork. Nate (my husband) and I took the kids the year before and had fun taking them again. They stayed on the outskirts of the festival and loved throwing the colors. It’s always an experience wrapping the camera up in Saran wrap and gaffer’s tape, hoping the colors don’t get inside, not being able to change settings very quick or even always be able to see if you’re in focus! But so far so good, haven’t regretted it yet!