I don't know if many of you remember this post that I wrote in May, during our first quarter. I was having a tough time battling disappointment when it came to my photos and as a result I wasn't finding much joy in learning what I had been previously so excited to study.I'm not going to say that it's been a breeze the rest of track either, there have definitely been several other times when I have felt very reluctant to bring out my camera since then.

But I have found it so encouraging to look back at my photos and even just think back to our first classes and see how much I have improved. That first day of class Jon told us to switch our cameras to manual, he also had us walk outside and take a photo telling us “you have five frames to get a perfectly exposed photo.” I had just changed my camera to manual settings for the first time and the first three photos that I took were pure white. The fourth and fifth were only slightly better because I gathered up the courage to ask for help from Idun and Eric, who both explained little bits to me enabling me to take this photo..

DSC_0006It's absolutely nothing to be proud of – but at least it had a little bit of colour!

During the rest of our classes that first quarter I felt challenged by nearly every new concept or task that we had to do and trying to combine everything to produce good photos was overwhelming. I could maybe get one part of the photo looking okay, but then I would overexpose, underexpose or have bad composition or focus.

At one point on outreach I stopped and thought about just how far I have come and that helped to change my perspective a little. Sure – I'm nothing close to even being a good photographer – but I'm so much closer than I was before! It's encouraging to compare how lost I felt each time we had an assignment during that first quarter and how much more confident I am now.

The other day Jon had us go out and take photos showing action in Brantford. It was a repeat of an assignment that we had had during the first quarter but as I got out there and did it, I noticed that I was much more confident in what I was doing than I had the first time. This time I actually enjoyed myself and was able to produce a couple of photos that I was pretty pleased with. That same day as we were sitting in class I took a photo of a steaming cup of tea and even though it's not the perfect photo – I was amazed that I had successfully taken a photo, with all manual settings, that I was fairly happy with and could never have dreamed of taking just a few months ago.

Steaming Tea

It's a process and sometimes it's hard to see when there is improvement because I am so zoomed in to the situation as it is now, but to look back and see how far I have come from that pure white shot to one that I exposed pretty well and that warms my heart is huge!

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