Adeli Grey and her doting parents

When Jentry and Clinton called me for a second photoshoot – the first was to announce that they were expecting – I was thrilled at the thought of meeting their new little one! And rightfully so. Adeli Grey is just the sweetest little thing. Inquisitive, laid back and absolutely adorable….

Choosing which few photos to put on this was so hard!! Adeli Grey is just so precious and the number of photos I initially chose was a bit too high for a quick sneak peek! LOL!

Thank you for allowing me the to meet your precious girl, Jentry and Clinton!

Adeli Grey and her doting parents

Heather, Bruce and their adorable girls

Seeing how much these two sweet girls, Abby and Kate, love each other brought back so many memories of my girls from the same ages. Abby and Kate both love mugging for the camera, exploring around and doing things together – with sparkling eyes and mischievous, happy grins the entire time.

And watching Heather and Bruce dote on their girls was so sweet to see!

Thank you so much for calling me! I loved working with your family… So much fun!

Heather, Bruce and their adorable girls

Momentum

Hooked

I know it’s been a bit since I’ve updated on my self assigned projects – I sort of gained a bit of momentum with several of the previous posts… I had a gallery opening (WOOHOO!) and I’ve been setting my contact management software up. And I’ve been busy booking clients and keeping out of trouble. Mostly!

Which means that I haven’t been exploring my creativity (except when I’ve been doing photo shoots for others). Which is actually fine – taking a breather, finding some space and being able to look at the photos I currently have while finding new things to do with them has been a bit of a refreshing change for me. My way has been to take a photo, edit it and forget about it in the past. And that’s not really what I want for the future. Definitely see changes down the road….

As I get back to editing my client’s work, I’ll leave you with the photos that were part of my show! I hope you enjoy…. (And you can see the work displayed on Mt Crested Butte at the Alpenglow Gallery in The Lodge at Mountaineer Square through December.)

Evening Glow II

Wheeled

Reflection in Green

One last note to add… I feel like just keeping myself moving forward – even when it feels awkward, amateurish and fake – has been incredibly helpful! It’s forcing me to not only make the time for photography, but keeping a space in my head open just a little bit more. I’m finding inspiration in the oddest places – a show about chefs, the gorgeous, cutting, almost blinding colors of our beautiful valley, the chance thought someone has shard. And I really love that I can apply it to my photography in a brand new way – even if it’s only in my head right now!

Small steps have really helped keep me moving – something I’ve struggled with in the past. It’s pretty exciting to figure this out about myself!

Have you learned anything new about yourself lately? Are you finding new ways to look at things? Gained any momentum?

Momentum

Experimentation

Figuring out what stands out to me with the original image was quite a treat – to step back and really see what appeals to me has been really enlightening.

After poking around a little more, I still haven’t been able to find other photographers who talk much about the process of “rediscovering” themselves or looking at their art in a new way…

Is this because it’s so personal? Because people aren’t willing to put themselves out there as someone who doesn’t have it all perfect? That they aren’t interested in failing in the public eye?

I’m not sure.

For me, this process is new. When you’re doing portraits, you’re trying to do it for others, for your client. This is exactly what portrait photography requires.

But sometimes it’s hard to include yourself once your style is “set”. For me, while I feel there is always room to do new things even with portrait photography. But the idea of trying new things while still trying to include and please my clients feels daunting.

Experimenting on my own while continuing my portraits feels more freeing for me.

Let go of something old to allow something new to take its place.

After looking at barriers, I realized all this – that “I’m a portrait photographer with a certain style and experimenting shouldn’t be done”. That was my thought!

I had also been holding on to a LOT of old (3-8 years old) fine art work that no longer suited me for a variety of reasons. So I let it go. I gave it away.

Not because I didn’t like it, but rather so I could make room for something new. I wasn’t sure what would happen. I was just trusting that wherever that voice was coming from, it was correct….

And I did bring in new ideas and new inspiration within days of this happening! It felt SO freeing.

Suddenly, my resistance to putting my work in a gallery fell away. I felt I needed to be “somewhere” with my work and that it had to be completely cohesive into order for that to happen. But you know what? That’s just silly!

And after talking to a few other artist friends, I realized that it was just my brain trying to mess with me.

So far, I’ve contacted 3 galleries and plan to chat with a few more early next week (another barrier coming down!). We will see what happens after that!

In the meantime, here are some of my experiments with a few thoughts below each.


My Experiments

With all of these images, I sat and thought about what it was that I liked about each. What could I pare down and convey better to someone looking at them. Much of what I shoot is about color, shape, lines….

These photos happen to be color photos, but often, I choose black and white because of these things. So trying to keep the color and still create the feel I was wanting was a really fun experiment – one that I want to work with more!

In this image of the iconic Camp 4 Coffee shack, the things that always stands out are the shapes and haphazard feel of the colors and the lines. Do you start to see what I’m seeing? Does this image stand out to you? Or does it bother you?

This image was a bit more experimental. I had several different shots with different lenses with this green door – and they all stood out to me for different reasons.

And as I played around with the Green Door, I had to think about what it was that was important to me with the image. When I finished and feel in love with my first image, I found that one of the details I loved – the chicken wire around the outside of the door – was very visible, but the image looked too close to a photograph. More factual, less representational.

And then I stumbled across another image I almost got rid of and tinkered with that one. And I found that the things that were important – the detail around the door, the color of the roof, the snow in front – disappeared and created a much more interesting image for me.

I’d love to hear your thoughts!


I love this shot! What has always stood out to me was that it looked like an eye – which is why I’ve loved it in B&W so much.

Finally, with this photo, I was trying to get rid of some of the detail while still retaining the optical illusion of an eye. It’s hard to see this small (the editing I did, that is), but if you click on it, you can see that I’ve tried to keep you from seeing all the small detail, to bring you back to looking at the overall image and the shapes created by the dead and beautifully alive trees.


Do you experiment with your photography? How?

I have in the past, but it’s been from a far more technical perspective. I am pretty surprised at how much I’m enjoying this process. I wasn’t really expecting that!

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

Experimentation

Barriers III

Another HDR from long ago that I’m quite in love with….

It’s funny, the barriers I have had in the last week for completing this post…. Various illnesses, random health stuff (nothing serious), lack of sleep – and how those really affect my ability to tap into my creativity. And then I question myself again – are these really barriers or is it all in my mind? Hmm…..

Anyway, I’m back! And as you can probably tell, a regularly scheduled blog posting timeline doesn’t really seem to be happening for me right now. So rather than stressing, you’ll just see me when you see me!

My original intention was to examine one barrier and try to break past it. And I definitely did that. I have found myself bringing my camera around, considering how to do an HDR or a Pano shot and wondering where I could take them…. Either from a shooting or an editing perspective.

But then on a rainy, dreary, overcast day here in Crested Butte (rare – and we have had a LOT lately!), I brought my camera with me – I just love the low clouds, the muted colors. And found a few photo ops that really drew me in.

With one in particular, this bird right below, I realized I could play around in Photoshop and try a few things.

For me, this was about the process, not the end result. I like the end result, I don’t really love it. It doesn’t have a ton of meaning to me.

But I REALLY enjoyed the process if finding photos to layer, deciding on the overall feel of the image, looking at how it all came together.

And it’s funny! As I look at it more, I am seeing what I would do to change it up. It feels like a far longer process, this tweaking and changing, than I’ve done in the past.

And I really like that process!  Don’t be surprised if you find more of that from me in the future….

Playing around in Photoshop – layering 4 or 5 images together. (Including some open source images and two of mine.)

On another note, I ran across some more photos I took last year that I had wanted to merge. I was particularly happy with this one.

Near Irwin, Colorado

So where to from here? I’m not sure. There may be a Barriers IV post or maybe I’ll be on to something new…. Only next week (or the week after!) will tell!

Did you try anything new? What are your thoughts on the photos I’ve done? Are you breaking down any barriers?

Barriers III

Barriers – Part II

I’ve rewritten this a few times and nothing is flowing today. So I’ll let me first real HDR and Panoramic photos speak for themselves…. (Click for large versions

HDR

These are the three images I used for my first HDR
My first ever HDR that actually worked out! I’m pretty excited at how beautiful it is!
My second HDR. The tonal range is pretty astounding compared to the original! Sure, I know that many people have been doing them for a LONG time, but having it so much more accessible is wonderful – especially when the results are so gorgeous.
The lake on Slate River Road (I’m not sure of the name.)

Panoramics

3 Image panorama
Uncropped panorama. I’ve tried so many other apps that stitch, but you can see where the sky is put together from two different photos… and it’s a challenge to adjust that. I am thrilled with how this turned out!
Overlooking town (Took these 6 photos last fall, but finally tried to stitch together with a beautiful result!)

(sorry for the delay – I was sick for several days)

Barriers – Part II

Barriers

sun is setting on old habits

I’ve had a few words that keep popping out at me lately – and one of them is barriers. Not external barriers, but rather how I am limiting myself in my head, putting up my own road blocks.

Some of them are obvious…. “I’m a portrait photographer and that’s where my focus has been for the last 8-10 years, I can’t change direction!”

Others are more subtle. “I need to get [insert something not important} done first.”

Or maybe it’s just guilt – feeling like I should be doing something different instead, that what I’m doing isn’t important. Isn’t helpful.

What it really boils down to, though, is being outside my comfort zone. Do. Not. Like. Or rather, I just don’t feel comfortable there! Odd, eh? LOL!

So this next assignment is going to be looking at where I am only staying in my comfort zone… Here are a few things that are outside my comfort zone:

  • Playing around in Photoshop (I’m a Lightroom gal, but do love Photoshopping interesting things!)
  • Unplanned photography time – wandering around taking photos for the love of it!
  • Getting Pixifi more dialed in. (*love* Pixifi, FYI. Client and photography business management online software.)
  • Sketching out ideas and trying something new and different
  • Getting in touch with galleries to show my work

What am I going to do to push myself? I’m not sure, but I’m definitely going to try something that makes me uncomfortable! (In a good way…)

Are you going to join along? What is outside YOUR comfort zone?

Barriers