It's the middle of wedding season so the idea of personal work may be the furthest thing from your mind. I often feel like I don't have time for personal work because that adds an entire new shoot to my workflow. And is that really efficient during wedding season? I am here to tell you that it absolutely is. I am convinced that personal work is essential to thriving as an artist. Because of this, I am sharing why you should make time for personal work this week. And these photos you see?! They are from a shoot last week with one of my sisters. We used three simple props: a flag, a candle, and sparklers.
Spurs on creativity
I try to shoot personal work as often as I can because it makes me more creative. I try new things... things that are only thought of during the session. I use whatever I can find as a prop and I try to shoot my subjects in new ways. This kind of creativity just makes me that much better at my next shoot.
Slows you down
The pace of personal work is my favorite. You're not racing against golden hour. You're just letting things happen and taking a lot of risks. We shot for about an hour and we were in no hurry. I took my time getting the settings and coached Jenna through genuine posing.
Jenna is our team editor, so I took a photo and described what our presets would do to the blues and greens. Taking things slow is inspiring for everyone!
I always try to set up my personal shoots in a way that challenges me to think differently. I especially love challenging myself with the light. For this shoot, it was heavily overcast and almost dark when we arrived. I used the candle to light Jenna's face and loved the warm skin tones and cool blues and greens. I love that this set of digitals looks so much like Portra (my new favorite film)!
Gives you room to try new things
When you're shooting personal work, it's all about your creativity. You don't have to worry about anything except for doing whatever your little creative heart wants. I loved just sitting on the rocks while I worked with my gear to find a tilt shift look that I love (tilt shift: take your lens off and tilt it to find new planes of focus).
Canon 5D Mark iii, Canon 50 L f/1.2