November was a huge month for me in terms of education; over the years I’ve always tried to continue to learn and grow as a photographer, taking online classes and getting out for creative shoots and experimenting with other photographers, but last month I took it to another level by attending not 1, not 2, but THREE workshops, all completely different and in-person (not online). It’s just what I needed at this time of year, when work is finishing up and I’m feeling a little drained artistically. I’ve just gotten back from my last workshop (an in-person 2-day workshop in Toronto), so I’ll be sharing about that one soon, but first I wanted to share my experience at a really fun little class I took early on in the month with Joni Burtt (who did some photos of Dan and I back in January.)
The class was on ‘free-lensing‘: if you haven’t heard of it, it’s basically a neat little trick where you actually physically remove the lens from your camera when you take a shot, creating a really blurry, dream-like look to your images that can’t be achieved in any other way. Joni is a master at this and the photos she takes of her children all have that incredible dream-like quality (see her IG for examples), and although it’s not something that can used all the time, it was super neat to learn something new and add to my bag of ‘tricks’. I’ll definitely be using it for personal work and might even throw some in to my couples sessions. Joni is a great teacher, she made it really easy to understand and it was great to spend an afternoon with other creatives, learning and shooting (you can see some of my attempts in this post). Most of all though, this is what I took away from the class, something she said at the very start of her talk:
“Freelensing makes your images look like how a memory feels.”
Oh, my heart. So true. Less technical mastery, more feeling…this is what I want to work on in 2017.