A few weeks ago I was lucky enough to attend a Photography Weekend hosted and run by Sara-Jayne Jones from Keep Up With The Jones Family blog.
I truly believe life places people in your path. I met Sara-Jayne some years ago at a blog conference, Cybher. I don’t really know how we came to be chatting beforehand. For some reason I thought she was Welsh, she’s not- although she studies in Wales and I believe her when she tells me she’s an awesome rugby player.
In similar circumstances, I met Ali from We Made This Life, I think at Blog Camp in Birmingham, Ali isn’t Welsh either, but she’s lucky enough to live here.
And along with two others, we all came together in Herefordshire in a beautiful home, to learn about how to use a camera in manual.
I went with low expectations, over the years many have tried and failed, I have accepted my brain copes with two considerations, but with three, it’s lost.But alongside a complete love of Sara-Jayne’s photography, I was willing to take the risk in her confidence in me. In her previous life Sara-Jayne was a primary school teacher, and she studied law- so making false promises is not in her nature, along with having her feet heavily in the reality of learning.
And so, this post is of course me eating humble pie (along with some deliciously edible Nila Holden cookies which were so photogenic!). It’s true that after less than 48 hours in Sara-Jayne’s company I haven’t turned my camera back to ‘Auto’.Sara-Jayne has an unassuming way, an ability to handle any learner (especially me, who uses all kinds of tactics to detract from taking things seriously), and a way of bringing us together, keeping a pace of learning without anyone getting behind or bored by the pace. She also carefully challenges you, making sure you understand, making you aware of how to create a good photo (think scuffed shoes, dirty knees and elbows!).
Over the two days on the course there was a pace which allowed learning to be understood, practised, and somehow absorbed into a norm. Bringing each element to life, I wasn’t aware of having to consider the three factors, more to focus on the photo I wanted to create.And I’m not there yet, by any stretch of the imagination- I know I’m not considering the direction of the light enough in my photos, but I am loving the photos I have taken- I never imagined I would be able to take them and feeling a sense of pride in the photo.We were also placed under no illusion about the benefit of a good edit to any photo, and fortunately with a little pleading from Ali and me, we’re all set to return in the Autumn for a bit more of Sara-Jayne’s tutelage, as we get to grips with Photoshop (in my head my use of PicMonkey is probably the equivalent of using a DSLR on Automatic!).
I’m writing this post because I’ve been out again today with my camera, and as much as I’d like to take all the credit for the photographs I’ve produced, well, my conscience has the better of me… but you’ll have to wait until the 15th for my Siblings post to understand my warm glow!