Do You See What I See? - Holl Photography

Did you see that?

The first time I heard that (probably - I really don't have that kind of memory!) it probably was because someone saw something unbelievable or amazing in some way. AND I probably just missed seeing something amazing! But when I'm with my photography friends, it is probably something entirely different. We tend to see things differently now. When I first started taking photos it probably was to get something in the photo, maybe a face or an object of some kind. I actually remember the first photography outing with my daughter. I tried to be artistic but I just didn't have have skills to work the camera.

Looking for the light...

Now when I go out for a photo session with a client or without, I'm looking for light. Not just any light will do. It has to be great light! Actually every time I plan a session it is around light, sun or some variation on on a theme. It really is that important. So what if I can't get the light I want? I make it! What if there is too much light? Well that is much harder to deal with, but you just have to have a plan.

One day I realized I couldn't stop looking.

A couple years ago I was walking through an amusement park with a couple of friends of mine. We were chatting about something not so important. My friend was walking slightly ahead of me when I just stopped. I saw the most incredible golden light reflecting off a man-made river, with ducks silhouetted in the light surrounded by branches from a nearby willow tree. It was great.

Eventually my friend walked back to me and asked what I was doing. I didn't have my camera, so I was soaking in the image. He was surprised that I even saw that, but agreed it was incredible. That's when I realized my photography brain was working all the time.

Loved this location, but the sun was just out of reach. Dad to the rescue with the gold reflector. I was able to blur out the background to create something special for Julia!

Can you see that?

When I'm on a photo session, I spend most of my time looking for the next shot or working on changing the current settings to make the light work for what I'm imagining. What surprises me is that other people don't see what I'm seeing. They imagine the photo differently than me, not that that is good or bad, but just differently. Many times I have to show them my camera for them to understand what kind of shot I'm trying to achieve. That's ok, that why they hired me! During my session on Saturday I was trying to get the sun in just the right place. I don't normally shoot in the morning, but on Saturdays it is always best to avoid weddings. I haven't run into a wedding at 8 am yet! The morning sun was glorious that day but it was just behind the building. So I set up my shot. Not bad, but maybe a little lower? Yep. Better? yep. but no sun. Just a little lower and just the right angle and I saw what I was trying to get! Sometimes it is easier than others, but I love the challenge anyway.

Loved the sun on her hair, but it wasn't quite enough...

A little better angle and a reflector. Much better!

What a Crazy Summer!

With all the craziness going on in the world right now, I have to admit it has been a good summer. Yes, it could have been better, but it really wasn't as bad as it could have been. In March I was mourning the end of so many things that we used to call normal. It was rough in so many ways, but it will get better and it has already. Today I return to the classroom in almost 6 months. Although all my students won't be returning, some will. All we can hope for is that this new normal is a safe and productive year, but mostly safe.

Although my music/teaching life spun out of control on March 13th, I haven't stopped working on my photography business for one single day. Some days I had to working on some boring stuff, but most days I just found ways to improve at least one aspect of my photography business. This summer was the result of all that work. I've been business than any other summer since I started my photography business. It has been great! August is essentially filled booked solid, but I still have some session times available in September. If you are interested in an incredible photography experience, let's talk.

Don't wait too long, Pittsburgh weather won't be so cooperative next month.

This post is a part of a photography blog circle featuring photographers specializing in a variety of niches. 

To see what the next photographer is sharing for our weekly theme, “Do You See What I See?” check out Jessica Wasik with Bark & Gold Photography, celebrating the joy and love between Pittsburgh pets and their people.

Continue to click the link at the end of each post in the blog circle until you eventually find your way back here.