Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Well, it has been a year.. Time to finish up my story!

  I never had a chance to finish up my story from part 2.  It doesn't end the way that I wanted!  Isn't that how it always goes!  I had ordered prints to enter in the print competition and made reservations to attend the Professional Photographers of the Ozarks.  My daughter ended up going in the hospital the day before I was to leave, so I missed it.  I couldn't leave her and I wouldn't have enjoyed a thing because I would have been worried about her the whole time.  I was so excited about going and thought this is how my story will end and it will all tie together...  Well, God always has a different plan doesn't he?  I was sitting and thinking about this tonight.  How our lives don't go as planned.  Many of us have had bumps in the road, and traveled the wrong path.  If you could, would you go back and change it?  I don't think I would.  Those bumps and paths made me who I am today.  Looking back at the struggles, they actually seem so small now.  Those struggles have humbled me, shown me who I am, and who I need to be.  I am getting ready to attend WPPI 2011.  I can't help but look back on the past year and see how much I have grown.  I wanted to attend so badly.  I couldn't really afford it, but knew if I could just be there it would make all the difference.  Doug didn't want me to go, who could blame him!  Leaving him, with 3 small kids for a week, and letting his wife travel across the country alone...  I could see his point.  But I was so hungry for knowledge, I had to find a way.  That is when I found my lab giving away free passes to attend.  I entered right away.  On the day they were to announce, I was like a kid at Christmas.  They posted a video of how they drew the winner.  They pulled out a name, it wasn't mine.  I was heartbroken, but kept praying, "God, please let there be a way.  I will understand if there isn't, but please let there be a way for me to attend."  I almost stopped the video after seeing I wasn't a winner.  But I kept watching.  Then, at the end, they said, well, lets just pull a couple more names out and give away some bonus passes.  My name was the last pulled out.  I cried.  I thanked God.  I called my BFF Starla.  I called my Hubby and told him I was going.  I called my mom.  I was so happy!  I learned so much from WPPI.  But more importantly, I learned even more about myself.  I learned how strong I was.  I never dreamed I would have driven myself to St. Louis ( hadn't even drove in the city), boarded a plane by myself, switch planes...  all alone.  But, I knew I had to take a leap if I wanted to fly.  I also had just started my website at this same time.  Now, a year later, I don't know what I would have done without it!  Now, here it is, time for WPPI 2011.  Still a little nervous, but so eager to learn more.  My advice to anyone wanting to pursue a career in photography, would be knowledge.  You can attend a "photography school" but I really do not feel it will give you the advice and knowledge that you would receive with mentoring and attending workshops.  Photography is about practice and knowing your equipment and lighting.  Everyone today with a digital camera is a "photographer."  You have to set yourself apart from that group if you want to succeed.  You have to learn how to handle lighting, posing and exposure.  There are so many elements to a photograph besides a "cute picture."  You have to practice and study.  Look at other photographs and see if you can tell where the light is coming from.  Look at the depth of a photo.  Does the photo look flat?  Try to figure out how the photographer did it.  Once you start asking these questions and searching for answers, you will be on the right track.   I urge you to follow your heart.  Sometimes it takes a complete leap of faith, but the reward is completely worth it.  God Bless.
Jasmine Star :)
Tamara Lackey! :)
Oh, and just in case you don't believe me about the video, here it is :)  Wait until you see my name :)

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