Our final, bonus exercise in the Find Your Eye photography e-course was to review and assess what we actually got from the class. Immediately after the class finished, I went on vacation for a couple of weeks, so I’ve had some time to consider this. But it’s still not easy to put my thoughts and feelings into words.
Having reviewed my lesson posts and inspiration file, I note the following discoveries:
- I do have an “eye.” My photographic interests and style have remained pretty consistent for all of the (ahem) many years I have been taking photographs.
- My eye is unique to me. While others may take similar photographs, mine are still . . . somehow mine.
- I will always be able to find subject matter for my camera. (More on this in a future post.)
- Sometimes it really is about the equipment. (More about this later, too.)
- Looking at the work of other artists, whether it be photography or other media, helps me to grow in my own work.
- Photoshop is not evil, but simply a tool, or sometimes an artistic medium in its own right, to help us achieve the image we envisioned. Post-processing can be fun!
- Photographing with intent and purpose can be interesting, informative, and fun, even if I do have to be dragged into it kicking and screaming.
- Stepping outside my comfort zone can be challenging and frustrating. It can also result in some very nice pictures!
- Thinking is a vital part of a photographer’s tool kit. This is a valuable lesson for someone whose photography is mostly intuitive.
All of these discoveries have been made in community with an amazing group of fellow students. As I’ve mentioned before, this is the first time I’ve ever shared my photography outside of a small circle of family and friends. During this course, I have learned so much specifically from feedback and interaction with the other students and our instructor, Kat, through all of our online photo journals.
My photography is usually a solitary pursuit, but through this course I’ve made connections with kindred spirits from across the country and around the world who now feel like friends. Not only have I found my eye, but I’ve found a new respect for my own work by seeing it through the eyes of others. It’s been remarkable to discover that images I’ve captured with my heart and mind can touch others, even complete strangers.
I’ve discovered a new joy and enthusiasm for my old pastime. I can’t wait to continue the journey in our next class, The Journey of Inspiration.