June has been the month of races - my races. Between the half marathon almost three weeks ago (already!) and the triathlon tomorrow I've been building up, tapering, racing, building up, tapering and racing again.
July is the month of wedding photography.
You see, by day I am Céline, the quality improvement coordinator / team leader who does her best to make life a little better with people who have a developmental disability. On evenings and weekends I am Céline the runner, swimmer, cyclist, friend, sister, daughter, lover, volunteer...and photographer. I don't tend to blog a lot about my love of photography other than to post many of the photos I take. But I sure do love being behind the camera.
The love affair started years ago - during one of my life's big transitions. My life had just taken a huge turn (my choice) and I suddenly found myself living in a tiny apartment, struggling to pay the bills and wanting desperately to have my own camera. I have no idea why I wanted one so badly all of a sudden but I just knew I did. So I saved $20 every paycheque until I could afford my first digital camera. I bought it and promptly convinced my mother to take a photography course at Niagara College with me.
By the end of the first class I knew that I would love my new little camera. The buttons were intuitive, making photos look the way I wanted them to look quickly followed. I was soon showing all the ladies who sat with me how to use their cameras and shooting EVERYTHING.
One of my favourite photos - taken back in the day when I was learning about depth of field.
My mother quit after the first class - having learned all she ever needed to know. I saved my pennies again until I could buy my first SLR and lens and I took every class the college had to offer. During these classes I made some pretty amazing friends who are still a part of my life. We meet up a few times a year, take pictures, brag about pictures and check out the coolest new gadgets. During the classes I learned all sorts of neat tricks and I decided to start a little side business - Céline Parent Photography. I began offering to take pictures of anyone who would let me. I did family portraits, pet photography, boudoir, sports photography, aerial shoots (so much fun!) and wedding photography. I said yes to every request (no matter how nervous it made me) and I continue to take on whatever I'm asked to take on. If I don't know how to do it - I'll say yes and then quickly learn what I need to learn before the big day.
My first attempt at aerial photography - Doug flew the plane and I snapped Niagara Falls.
Photography, in my opinion is 80% technical and 20% creative. I'm pretty good at technical things - I understand how to create the effect I want to create, how to let just enough light in and how to adjust the shutter speed to capture a runner sprinting toward the finish line or create a fairy tale waterfall.
My favourite running model - I need a fast shutter speed to catch this guy!
I love the technical part of photography. I enjoy the challenge of figuring out how to do something - like painting with light.
My friend Breanne and I got together one night to try painting with light. We set up shop in my living room, picked a subject, turned off all the lights and used a flashlight to paint with light. After a few failed attempts, we were able to turn a small stone statue into an impressive, imposing eagle.
The creative part of photography? Well that's where I struggle a bit. I'm much better at replicating something than I am at creating it out of thin air. So I spend the days leading up to an event devouring photography books and magazines in an attempt to fill my brain with pose ideas. I even have apps on my iPhone that provide pose suggestions if I completely freeze.
I tend to do about two or three weddings per year. Mostly by word of mouth. Mostly for people I know. They don't usually fall two weeks apart however. So July is quickly turning into the month of wedding photography. Between preparing for the event, shooting the event, editing the photos, preparing for the next event, shooting and editing that one, I'll be spending a lot of time behind the camera and at my computer. I'm excited though. It's been a while since I've shot that kind of event and I'm ready to flex my photography muscles a bit.
So race day tomorrow and then I trade my racing bibs for a camera bag for a few weeks.