I'm so excited to introduce you all to my sweet friend, Shawn. She is a mama with a heart for photography who loves documenting her three beautiful girls. She has generously shared her passion and tips with us today. I know you'll enjoy learning from her perspective.
How did You get started with photography?
Well I had a “regular” job for a long time, 13 years actually. I had just had my third child in July and returned back to work in October. Three weeks after I returned from maternity leave I found out that the company I worked for was eliminating my position, there was 17 of us all together, we would stay until December 1st. Of course at first I was devastated, I had no clue what to do really. Then I realized this was actually a blessing.
At that time I had a 5 month old, 3 year old and 14 year old at home and I wanted nothing more than to be home with my girls everyday. My hubby and I discussed it and decided I would take some time off. I had received a severance when I left and with what we would save on daycare we knew we would be ok for a little while.
I also knew I needed to do something outside of being Mamma and Homemaker. Besides having the extra income I am the type of person that needs to have something of my own, something that makes me feel useful, independent, something I enjoy and something that is just mine. This is what my old job was to me, even though it probably wasn’t something I loved doing everyday it was mine and I was good at it. It gave me my independence.
This was my chance to do something I really loved, a fresh start and I had time to really think. I must say that from the very beginning I knew photography was my ultimate dream, something I have been passionate about for most of my life. So after discussing it with my amazing hubby he was completely on board. I started taking classes, received tons of help from my friend who is an amazing photographer herself and practiced and practiced!
So now it’s been almost two years, I am still at home with my babies and enjoying every moment! Aside from taking tons of pics of my family I am so lucky to take pics of other beautiful families as well!
Could you please share your heart for photography?
So photography for me is so many things. I am a very creative person, I am one of those people that is always doing something, whether it be re-making an old piece of furniture, scrapbooking or taking pics. I love the art of photography, but I also love the memories.
I have a terrible memory, I always have, it’s just something I have been blessed with I guess. But when I look at a pic I can remember everything about that day or event. I remember the feeling, what my kids were doing that day, their reactions, and how I felt. So when my kids look back at those pics I can tell them the story that goes with it. It helps me remember the little details of their childhood. So photography is such a blessing in my life, it really is so very important to me.
What do you do with your photos? How do you display them around the house? Albums? Internet? Etc?
I use my photos in many ways. I am an avid scrapbooker, have been for years! I do traditional albums and just recently started digital albums which are a great way to showcase your pics in a beautiful way and its quick! I also hang them in my home, I love clusters of pics on a wall, I also have small 4x4 pics that I hang on strands of twinkling lights, this is one of my many ideas from Pinterest that I love, I am able to change the pics out often when I get some new pics I just love and MUST display!
WHAT’S IN YOUR CAMERA BAG?
The better question is what isn’t in my camera bag! Of course my camera, with my favorite lens, Canon EF 24-70 mm f/2.8. Usually an extra lens Canon EF 50mm f/1.8, couple extra memory cards, batteries, flash, business cards, diapers, wipes, wallet, bath and body works lip gloss in grapefruit, lotion, tissues, pony tail holder, bobby pins, pen, phone, Tylenol and gum!
WHAT EQUIPMENT DO YOU ACTUALLY USE MOST OFTEN?
The lens I use about 97% of the time is the Canon EF 24-70 mm. It’s just that lens that works good for just about everything and when your taking pics of kiddos, especially mine who are sooo over mommy taking their pics, you don’t have time to switch lenses. You just need to go to it and quickly! And honestly I am quickly becoming a huge fan of my camera on my phone. For those days when I’m juggling a new puppy, a 2 year old and a 5 year old (the 16 year old can usually juggle herself) I don’t always have the option of carrying my Canon so it’s either I use my phone or I don’t get that cute pic! So with tons of practice and some editing apps I have really started to embrace and love my phone camera.
DO YOU HAVE ANY TIPS FOR BEGINNERS?
My advice for beginners is take tons and tons of pics, take a class and start practicing! Take your camera everywhere and try new angels of the same pic. Move around, many times I’m lying on the ground usually over an ant hole in the grass at the park to get that one great pic of someone’s little kiddo, and its usually worth it! Soon you’ll find your groove, your niche. You’ll develop your own style! And when you get that one great pic, that perfect expression, that sweet glimpse, it will be the best feeling every single time!
Thank you so much for Shawn for sharing your perspective on motherhood and photography!
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