Me and My Attitude

Not too long ago one of my brides asked me over email to share a little more about myself. I was stumped for a good day but finally decided to write my story as it relates to photography and my clear obsession with it. Upon writing her I realized maybe there are others out there that feel the same way. Here's my story and my attitude– cause one doesn't exist without the other.

"I can't believe I'm going to admit this to the entire blogging community out there. Ready? One, two Three... I swore to myself I would never be a people photographer. There. Done. I said it and it's true.

Seriously. I always told myself "I don't do people." Meaning I don't photograph people. I was a fine artist I told myself and fine art photographers don't photograph people. Umph as I turn my nose up in the air.

Photography is nothing new to me. Art is nothing new to me. I've taken private art classes since I can remember (thanks mom and dad!) have always enjoyed being crafty and love making things. My dad took pictures as a hobby- I stumbled into my first photo class in high school. I wasn't very good at first, but I got the hang of it. I enjoyed my class but was always so shy and spent more time hiding in the corner than answering photo questions in front of the class. I remember how much I loved being in the darkroom watching the little images appear before my eyes. I also loved my other studio classes but as college approached and major was declared I vetoed photography because it was just an elective.

Fast forward a few years as I'm taking first my major class at Chapman– design 101 or whatever it was called. I had my shiny new Mac tower booted up and ready to run. Halfway through the class I come to a very important realization. I hate graphic design. I just hate it. I hate that it takes me 10 hours to draw a butterfly on the computer what could have taken me 10 minutes to do by hand. Umph. But my major was already declared... sigh. I decided to talk with my advisor to see is there was anything I could do. And there was. I'd have to make up classes but alas I would be spending my time and mom and dad's money at least on something I enjoyed, right? I happily have a major in Photography and also in Art History (just to challenge myself). I don't mean for this to turn resumé-ish but it's part of the story. Art History is drilled into my brain and that helps analyze images stories and lends way to posing. Photo well, was just plain awesome. Hard work but awesome non-the-less. It was so art centered I was molded into a artist who proved ideas through photography and put on shows about them. I was a art photographer.

Fast forward a few more years. Corporate Job. Great experience but didn't quite fit. Still inside at a computer... It was a great job and I truly loved what I did (Photo Editor) but I needed something else. It wasn't till Josh (my husband) encouraged me to photograph people. Whaaaaat? Do you even know me? Helllllo? I don't do people. So I began showing my fine art work in local galleries. I had a great time meeting people, talking with them during my shows but still something was missing. Being a fine artist meant only having interaction with people once in a while. Poor Josh would come home from work and I'd be talking a mile a minute and practically maul him cause I hadn't talked to anyone else all day. Something again wasn't fitting. I actually like people and I like being around them so again... why don't I photograph people. Cause! I'm aa.....

Fine. I'll try. I'll give it a shot and see how it goes. And boy do I almost feel bad for the people I photographed at the beginning. I was bad. I was awkward. I fumbled with my gear. I needed practice but I never grew tired of it because of the interaction, the new people I meet and the stunning images I loved when I got home. I was an addict. Who was I going to photograph next? Were was I going to shoot. I know this fits me so well because I know what doesn't. There is just something special to be said about being invited into people's most intimate moments of life. Not many people can say that about their job but I'm happy to be one of them that can

Fast forward to today. I love what I do. I love meeting with new people. I love the interaction. I love hearing their stories. Everyone is different and that's so cool. I work for myself. I own Soul Mates Photo and it feels great. Work is interesting because it's what I love and it's always different. I love my clients because they appreciate good photography. I like the work days. I truly look forward to being more creative each session then the last. I don't like the same thing twice and love making images that are beautiful and I love it when my clients are happy. And really all that just fits. "

And really what's a post without some attitude? I've been practicing mine since grade school as you can see below.

Smiles to doing what you love.
Melissa with Soul Mates Photo.



Katie said...

this is too cute. We've all got attitudes in our own ways :-)

Deyla Huss said...

Seriously... laughing my buns off right now! love this picture of you!! you are so funny!