2017 Self Portrait Project | January | Maryland Portrait Photography
"Do one thing every day that scares you." - Eleanor Roosevelt
As a photographer specializing in weddings and portraits it can be easy in winter to hibernate after the hectic craze of the holidays. Many people don’t get excited about taking photos in the cold, unless maybe there is lovely snow to erase the gray. This winter has felt more like spring, but the trees are still waiting for spring to awaken.
Anyway, when another photographer shared in a Facebook group that she was doing a self-portrait project and invited others to join her, I knew that would be a great challenge for me for many reasons! The self portrait challenge covers the year with 26 different themed portraits to complete – approximately 2 per month. You can check out some of the participants self-portraits on Instagram using #2017self26.
1. I was excited because a friend had reached out to me for ideas for a photography challenge to push her to grow her technical and artistic skills with photography (she joined the challenge as well)
2. It can be easy to hide behind the camera, but I think its so important to get in front of it-to feel what my client feel.
3. It’s also extremely challenging to do a self-portrait because not only do you have to think of composition, camera settings, location, and light, - you now have the added challenge of running back and forth between your camera to change these settings, using a tripod, interval timer or remote, chasing flyaway hair along the way.
The different themes are intriguing and got me thinking. Inspiration and effective implementation are two very different things. It’s also so very interesting to see everyone elses’ ideas come to life surrounding the same theme.
For January, the first theme was “Favorite Things”.
I love trees. In my childhood, I grew up with very few neighbors (none that were my age) in a home surrounded by woods in Western Maryland. Although I primarily photography weddings and portraits around the Baltimore and Annapolis areas, I am as happy photographing Frederick and Hagerstown Weddings as well. I love the views off of I-70- give me all of the hills and forests. I feel as if I was immersed in Narnia growing up – I would travel through the wardrobe and wander the forest, speaking to the nymphs in the trees.
The Second theme was “Light”.
Realization of my love for light has been growing rapidly in the last few years. With my husband, we live in a basement apartment and have done so for 6 years. It is a financial blessing but my photographers soul does miss the light. Walking to put some things in the car for work one morning, I was struck by the beautiful light. I took a selfie (yes, I’m a real photographer and yes, I still take selfies with my cell phone) and then ran back inside to get my DSLR. Lots of trial and error. These were taken with my camera sitting on my car. This camera connect to my phone which makes it much easier to focus and change settings. The light was so dreamy – I just want to soak it in, eat it, be it.