June 20, 2009

on taking another step...

As many of you already know, on Thursdsay evening I took another small step with my photography. Okay, well, maybe it seemed small to many people, but to me it was HUGE. Like, I was bornerline naseous the entire morning. And maybe several days leading up to it. Okay, in all honesty, it began immediately after she asked me to take the photos a couple weeks ago.

I know, I have issues. I guess that I'm still working on finding the confidence that I need in order to go any further with photography. Part of me is so intimidated by the incredible people I know who do it professionally, and I seriously sit in awe of what they come up with. I'm always completely inspired and challenged and...end up wondering, "Will I ever get there?" And then I have to sit there and realize just how far I've come. I don't give myself enough credit, and often times end up second-guessing myself, or say things that show my lack of confidence. I think that I've always been like that, with pretty much anything I do that means something to me.

When my friend asked me to do her engagement photos, my first inclination was, "NOOOOO!" Not because I didn't want to, but because I have this fear of failure. Maybe I am a Negative Nancy (or, as my husband likes to call me, Bitter Betty) because I immediately thought, "Okay, she totally thinks I'm way better than I am. And what will she do if I don't take a photo she likes? Is she going to feel like she has to use one of my photos? So much pressureeee! Must not faaaaail! Hold meeeee!"

And, as it turns out, they turned out far better than I had thought they would. Which tells me that perhaps I need to be a bit more brave. And stop second-guessing myself so often. Granted, there is so much I have yet to learn about photography - especially when it comes to giving direction to the people I'm taking photos of, considering I'd rather catch random moments and not have people be all posey-posey - but, really? I'm doing okay. I've only had this camera for about a year, and I've learned a lot. I've taken so many photos that, to me, capture the most perfect moments in the most perfect way. And, really, isn't that what means the most to anyone behind a camera?

At this point, I'm learning a lot about believing in myself. I'm learning a lot about confidence, and not making excuses or downplaying what it is I do. I think, "Maybe I could do this. Maybe I am already doing it." And how will I continue to grow without taking a few steps out of my comfort zone, even with the fear of failure staring me straight in the face?

That's what it's all about, anyway.

I also can't tell you just how much of an impact all the encouragement I've received has had on me. With each person kindly pushing me towards my goal, I become more and more confident. I can't tell you how often my soul has been incredibly warmed by a sweet compliment. It's people like you who build me up, and make me brave, who help me remember to believe in myself. So, thank you. I can't tell you how many Sally Field moments I've had in the last few days, wanting to cry out, "YOU LIKE ME! YOU REALLY LIKE ME!" I just want everyone to know that every bit of encouragement I've been given has truly meant the world to me. I can't thank you all enough.

As much as I like to think I could possibly find the confidence I need within myself, it's really the feedback from those I love and admire that really gives me wings.

Um, also? This photo is totally going on my fridge. The cuteness is almost unbearable. I'm pretty sure, upon seeing this photo, my soul melted completely out of my body, for the fourth time this week. (It's becoming a bit of an issue, really.)

48 comments :

  1. I think these photos are adorable! You did a great job. I know what you mean about second guessing yourself, when people ask me to write something for them I totally freak out and almost always say no, but in the end it almost always turns out to be something they love. I guess everyone struggles with self-doubt to some degree or another. But I have always thought your photos were great, including the ones you take for Etsy lol. What kind of camera do you use?

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  2. The photos are beautiful! You could have fooled me - you look like a pro! :)

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  3. Kerri, they all really turned out so amazing... every single one. I'm so proud of you for taking the leap and doing this! I am sort of in the same boat as far as the whole photography thing goes and it's hard to take pictures FOR someone instead of just because, you know? I get so nervous.

    Honestly though, you are one of the people that I sort of try to be like when i'm taking my pictures. You're crazy talented and have a great eye (the camera? it helps, but it will only take you so far.). So yeah, basically I need to move into the other side of your duplex so we can be BFFs and picture taking buddies.

    I bet M is thrilled with these. :)

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  4. These are so amazing and I think you did a great job capturing the feel of the couple---they look so happy and in love that I just want to invite them over for some coffee and board games. They look fun, happy and comfortable, which means you did your job in making them feel good while being photographed.

    I'm totally flying you to Nor-Cal when it's my turn for photos.

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  5. Just as I thought!! These pictures are beautiful! Well done. I would be happy with these photos for my engagement pics.
    Your post was really touching, and to be honest made me tear up. haha. Yes I'm lame.
    I don't have any confidence in my photo-taking skills, but for good reason - I'm really not good at it LOL. But you are!! You should feel proud of yourself :)

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  6. Those photos are amazing:) Good job:) I would have been sooooo happy with them if they were mine:)

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  7. Kerri, you are so extremely talented. & while it would be easy for me to say "Girl, why are you freaking out?! You're obviously really good at what you do!" I can completely understand. I am the QUEEN of doubting myself. But I think the best part of the uber-amount of doubts is when you shock yourself & see that, you're REALLY good... you know? I don't mind the freak out as much, so long as I come out okay in the end.

    Either way, one of these days, I would LOVE to have you take photos of me & Jonathan. We don't have very many photographs of each other, & I just love the style at which you take pictures. You'll have to shoot me an email & tell me what your rates are. :] I'm dead serious... I wanna hire you!

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  8. Beautiful pictures.
    "I don't give myself enough credit, and often times end up second-guessing myself, or say things that show my lack of confidence. I think that I've always been like that, with pretty much anything I do that means something to me."
    AMEN.
    I do the same things. Even when I am confident in something, I STILL second guess, show lack of confidence, and ask other people if I am doing something the right way.
    Self confidence is something everyone struggles with, and I think its a lifelong struggle.
    But make sure you surround yourself with happiness. =D

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  9. I think you are so much more talented than you realize! I, too, have been trying to expand my photography skills so I know how nerve-wracking it can be. I say keep it up because these photos are gorgeous!

    Also, would it be strange if *I* put the last photo on my fridge, too? I love his expression....it's one of the cutest 'couple photos' I have ever seen. Great job!

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  10. You did do a wonderful job, just like I knew you would. You should be so proud! It's not just your fancy camera - you have a great eye for composition and editing. I love all your photos, so I knew you'd be fine with M and J. By the way - are they just the cutest couple ever or what!??!

    Anyway, I'd love to go out and play with our cameras together one day! Then we can come home and edit side-by-side while eating microwave popcorn, haha. Sound like a date?

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  11. :)
    you did a great job
    :)

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  12. Those are beautiful pictures!!

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  13. You did a fantastic job on these pictures! Really. And you deserve to be equally proud of yourself for the beautiful pictures as for the courage to step out of your comfort zone.

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  14. aww the pictures really are adorable!

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  15. Those pictures are great! That last was is absolutely adorable. Will you take my engagement photos?

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  16. I absolutely love the pictures especially the colors/warmth it has. You should start a photography side business, I swear.. you're that good.

    If you're ever in Arizona, I'd pay you to take pictures! :)

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  17. :) This post made me happy!

    I know what you mean about second-guessing yourself. I've been there all too often, and I'm slooowly learning to embrace myself and my abilities.

    By the way, the photos are fabulous :)

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  18. Great photos - you did an awesome job!

    ps- I feel the exact same way you do in regards to my photography. Maybe one day I will get the same push you got with a little encouragement!

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  19. I have just started following your blog and I have to say that if you had not told me that these photo's are a first for you I would not have guessed. They are beautiful (it almost makes me want to get engagement photo's even though my fiance and I agreed not to). I'm glad to see that taking this step (even though you had doubts) has resulted in something so fantastic. This just goes to prove that you can't know until you try. Congratulations (and I completely agree about the degree of adorableness in the final photo).

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  20. Those photos ARE gorgeous, and I'm glad that you think they turned out okay :) I think there is always going to be some hesitation when you have to put yourself out there, especially when you've got people who you measure yourself up to. I think self-doubt is pretty natural, and just goes to show how much you care about the subject, you know?

    I love that you were brave, and went out and did anyway and with such brilliant results! Go you, chika :)

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  21. You are doing it - Keep moving forward! =)

    Your photos are perfect, in the sense you caught them in a very sweet moment - well done!

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  22. The pictures are awesome! You are great photographer and I'm so glad that you are pursuing this direction.

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  23. I think you're photos are great. And I've been 'doing' this photography thing for about 6 years now, and you're taking better pictures than I am.

    They're adorable photos.

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  24. Those pics are beautiful! Can't wait to see more in the future!

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  25. I love every single one of your pictures. They truly are amazing. I know that we have the same camera but my pictures don't turn out as yours at all... what lens do you use?

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  26. You're already doing it, Kerri. These engagement photos are beautiful!

    I have found that while I have some doubts about my ability sometimes, the work of other photographers around me spurs me on. I think we all have thoughts and issues like that.

    Just keep doing what you're doing, and you will see that every day, you see something in a different light. *hugs*

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  27. Yay for you! The pictures are so nice! I bet your friend loved them! :)
    I am totally the same way...I practically in business for goodness sakes (designing a website, yay!) and I am still freaking out about taking pictures of people. Their memories...what if they hate them?! :)
    Yours look awesome though! Besides, think about how much you've learned in the last year and how much more you will learn in the next... :)

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  28. :) Aw, Kerri, these are great! Photography is wonderful! Follow your dreams and if you need any help feel free to get a hold of me!

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  29. I'd hire you... :)!

    but there be no reason for a looooong while.

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  30. Lovely photos! You go girl!

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  31. You are an unbelievable photographer and I am crazy impressed with your photos...and I know your friend will be too!

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  32. These are beautiful photos! I'm sitting here hoping that one day mine will be as lovely. :)

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  33. Honestly? I'm surprised that you DON'T have more confidence! You are gorgeous, talented (in SO many ways it's disgusting), and obviously have the type of personality that others want to be around.

    If you put your mind to any of your many talents (writing, crafting, photography...), you would be amazingly successful. It's true. :)

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  34. WOW. These are so completely heart warming. You did an amazing job as we all knew you would! I can't wait to see more (because you know there will be!) <3

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  35. Beautiful pictures! You did a GREAT job, I'd totally hire you to take my photos! :)

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  36. These are so cute!! You definitely did some amazing work here- I'm glad you stretched yourself and I'm excited to see where this leads you!

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  37. I think you did a fantastic job! That first photo captures such a sweet, pure moment. Love it!

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  38. Your photos are incredible. You managed to capture the hardest thing of all...genuine love! You should be really proud of these!

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  39. seriously these pictures are so fun and cute and perfect for an engagement session. i wasn't kidding when i said i may ask for your photography skills too when we get there. but seriously, love it.

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  40. The photos are lovely (and apparently I'm a pro photographer, so I guess that should mean something!) But she looks like she's about 15 years old.

    Totally my kind of thing, and I'm sure she'll be grateful for that when she gets older... but right now, she looks way too young to be kissing a guy that looks my age... :P

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  41. You did an awesome job! These are beautiful! :-)

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  42. Aww Kerri you did such an amazing job. I've loved looking through all of them on Facebook. You are awesome my dear.

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  43. Oh wow you're photos are so amazing! I would love to have photos like that. Great job!

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  44. Okay so when are you flying out to Pittsburgh to take my engagement portraits? You have much TALENT! Those photos are seriously professional quality. And not to mention insanely gorgeous.

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  45. Your photos are beautiful! You photograph with an eye towards the romantic and whimsical. You have a natural talent to photograph with emotion, that isn't something that all photographers possess. Congratulations and good luck!

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  46. kerri! that is so amazing - i am so happy and excited for you! you are such an amazing and talented lady, so i am sure you will succeed in whatever you do!

    xo.
    danni

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  47. Congrats Kerri! What an exciting opportunity! And you totally stepped up to the challenge! These pictures are absolutely gorgeous! Love the light. They are such a cute couple. So proud of you!

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