One of my first online advertisements for my business, branded with (if I remember right) my second website attempt. Still broke at this point (still broke now) I was working off free web hosting; which is a really inefficient way to run a business, no doubt. We make do with what we can though and work for better day’s.
In 2008 I was returning home from living in Portland, OR for under a year. I was without a job, without much savings in the bank and most my friends had moved away while I was gone.
This wasn’t the end of the world though. I had enough to survive while I looked for new work, and you can always make new friends.
By April I had created a new circle, new memories and somehow forgot to really look for work, but the matter couldn’t be ignored for much longer. Then one of my new friends got a hold of me in a desperate situation. He needed dental surgery or face severe medical consequences. He had six months previous purchased a new Canon EOS Rebel xti. Still owing about a grand on it (apparently his dentist doesn’t take credit) he needed the cash and sold it to me for $300.00 which at this time was a steal as it was still one of the newest models for hobbyist photographers. This was the rekindling of an old obsession. I quickly set to work to learn everything I could about the new camera, having only dealt with SLR’s or digital point and shoots previously.
It was like I was in high school again with my first Kodak dock digi point and shoot. I was taking pictures of everyone, all the time, everywhere. I was taking four hour drives around the state looking for new things to shoot, often finding nothing all that inspiring. Looking back now I could have assigned all sorts of limitations to a day to create inspiring from nothing, but live and learn. These habits could also be to blame for my being broke, it was a hard decision as to whether to invest in gas to find shots or invest in building branding.
I can admit I guiltily got swept up in all the crazy lightroom editing trends. Over processing my way to embarrassment before I came closer to my artistic center and leveled out. Although it didn’t take me long to level on my portrait work; I struggled with mastering my saturation / contrast with landscapes for a little while.
There was also the issue of equipment, it took me awhile to build the things I needed for the variety of genre’s I had planned to attack. I got plenty of bad advice along the way, a regular lewis carol adventure navigating the photography world. I am still recovering from some of the bad advice as it linked directly into important gear like lenses. I will bounce back one day and in the meantime people seem slightly impressed with what I have managed to do with what I have. I find those to be some of the greatest compliments.
My progress has been slow although my learning came quickly and continues. Sometimes it surprises me how many styles I have been through, and some I wonder why I left behind. HDR might have been one of the hardest styles to perfect and I don’t think I’m there yet, though I am a lot closer than I was year’s ago. I thought after already purchasing Photoshop that I would have to buy separate software good for HDR editing. Thankfully I was wrong and found a good process with photoshop HDR editing. A process previously shared in the blog.
I know seven years isn’t a special milestone or anything but it seems unreal to me that this much time has already passed. I guess when you look at my work though it’s easier to believe.
Seems like 2013 was the first year since I started clones that I haven’t done any. It was a busy office year on top of a ton of personal things happening, I am hoping to get back on my photography game in 2014.
At least in 2013 I still worked on general portrait work.
Thinking about doing something special for MSP seven year anniversary, not sure yet. Maybe I should just wait until I reach ten years, if we make it. Here’s hoping.