Wow, what a long week so far. Monday and Tuesday this week I attended Melissa Jill’s MJ2Day Photography and Business Workshop. The days were filled with shooting tips, off camera flash demonstration and just about everything else that is in Melissa’s head relating to photography. Thank you Melissa for sharing all that you do! I love it when photographers help photographers. I also made about 8 new photog friends while I was at it. Great to meet you Sara, Megan, Meredith, Amber, Tina, Leslie, Myra and Kristi. (yep, i was the only guy there!)
Now I have been to a number or workshops in the past year or so and I have been very clear to be sure that each has a distinct purpose. I wanted to see how Melissa built her wedding photography business into what it is today. I love her images and her branding is amazing, all of which I would love to emulate. I’m being sure to emulate and not replicate. I don’t want to be a carbon copy but I do love what she has going.
Some things I am going to work on post workshop:
Robb Shirey Photography Branding – I haven’t been completely happy with my whole identity since the new logo came out. I loved the logo but my designer took a full time job towards the end of the project and we never really finished the whole package. Good for her to have a job but bad for me. I’m currently in the works to revisit the identity package.
Shooting Wide Open – I love the amazing images that Melissa is able to produce and I know that I have the ability to make my images look the way I want but have always been hesitant to shoot wide open (to get that fuzzy background which is also called bokeh). She showed me how to use the back button for focusing and TADA, it all clicked! Check out some of the examples below.
Bio Page – My friend Dane Sanders suggested that you have a bio page on your website somewhere easy to access and front and center. My friend Melissa Jill also echoed Dane’s remarks. Yes, I know.. I know… I need to sit down and write my bio. I have started a number of times but then start to think that this is boring and nobody will read it. I’m important damit and someone will love me
Blogging, Blogging and more Blogging – I have fallen off the horse, many times. This time I am going to get back on and stay on. I am committing to at least 1 blog post per week regardless of what is going on. I have a TON of things going on this summer (France, Leadville 100 MTB Race, Pelotonia & my first triathlon just to name a few) so I should have plenty to say.
On the first day of the workshop Melissa had recruited a couple who has been married for about a year to hold a mock engagement session. The point of the exercise was for us to see how Melissa interacted with the couple and how she is able to get them to loosen up in front of the camera. We were able to shoot over her shoulder as long as we were also able to pay attention to what she was doing. Here are a few shots that I was able to get.
The first image (above) is without a sharpen action run. The one below is with the sharpen action… Which one do you think looks better?
We ended up at a small farm where the owners let us have run of the barn. I absolutely loved the wash of light coming from the setting sun against this HUGE tree. The second image is MJ in action.