Twenty Sixteen4:39 PM
"Dumpster Fire of a Year" is what 2016 is ever-so-fondly referred to by most people on every social media platform I use, and I can't help but agree for the most part. Yes, a lot of beloved celebrities were lost, and the election was a mess, but on a more personal level watching my loved ones try to survive this year was like trying to pull a piano out of a lake. My friends and family had a far worse year than I had, even though I too experienced some very not fun moments. 2016 became for me a year of self-awareness, and though I am an over-sensitive, anxiety-ridden mess a good chunk of the time, I am also very good at channeling a lot of my negative energy into something positive: work.
I don't think there was one week last year where I didn't either take work home, or work a weekend for Vesco. I redesigned this entire blog at the beginning of the year, and shot a few outfit photos with the help of Mariah all over Detroit. I was hired by my close friends to work for their band Stone Clover to do an assortment of things, their personal photographer at events being one of them, which in turn lead to some other endeavors. I had my very first (and hopefully not last) senior portrait gig, that ended up being a lot more fun than I had originally anticipated. I practiced shooting with my friend's dog at Belle Isle to get used to capturing movement, which lead me to becoming braver when shooting events with the band. i.e. crawling around on the stage to get better shots as opposed to meekly standing at the side for fear of getting in the way.
I bought my camera back in 2010 shortly after starting this blog, and I mostly just tinkered around with it. I quickly learned my strengths and weaknesses: I do alright taking portraits, I am terrible at detail shots. I talked to my photographer friends, I talked to photographers at the Michigan Renaissance Festival, I practiced until I became better at capturing movement. Mariah taught me some Photoshop basics, I bought books to learn how to edit better. I still take 1,000's of photos at events and only end up using less than 100. I spend hours editing and sorting photos, taking note of what can be improved, of what actually works well, and I am floored when my friends actually like my photos enough to share them on social media or use them as their profile pictures. It feels amazing to be proud of myself for something I am still learning about, and I can't wait to start on all of the projects I have in mind for this year.
I didn't make very many resolutions for 2017, mostly because now that I am decently far down a path of self-improvement, I would just like to keep up better habits and work on personal goals. However, I would like to make an effort to blog more. Blogging was my very first healthy creative endeavor, which ultimately lead me to toying around with photography to begin with. I already have quite a few ideas lined up for on my own, but I am also excited to collaborate a bit later in the year with a few people to hopefully push my skills a bit further as well as keep my content interesting. I am more motivated with this blog than I have ever been before, and I can't wait to share everything with you kittens! So stay tuned!