Find Your Eye: Why Photography?

In an effort to stay busy out here, I’ve started taking some classes. Right now they both happen to be photography classes, and I couldn’t be more excited. One class is actually a set of four sessions that will be held on base. The topics cover travel, macro, food, and a whole class on understanding your camera. I can’t wait! 

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The other class I’m taking, based online, is called “Finding Your Eye,” with Kat Eye Studio. I love the title of the class, because it reminds me that, while I’m still tuning my “voice” as a writer, I should also work finding my eye when it comes to photography. 
The first lesson prompt was simple: “Why do you photograph? Unfortunately, I couldn’t come up with an answer. Different images would come to mind, but nothing really stood out. Then I read the next paragraph with a few more questions: Why do I take photos? What draws me to photography? What are my motivations? What keeps me excited and interested? 

The instructor, Kat, says “Understanding and following your personal motivations is the first step to finding your eye,” and just like that, a photo came to mind and I found my answer. 

I like pushing myself out of my comfort zone with my writing and I think the same holds true for the pictures I take. I like capturing an audience’s attention, and when it comes to pictures, that typically comes from a spontaneous moment. I know this may sounds strange, and may leave me a little vulnerable for sharing this, but I get a thrill out of making a reader emotional; if I can make someone laugh, cry, reflect, happy, or even a little uncomfortable, then I’m content with my work. 
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another homecoming!
My weakness, I think, is that I get too comfy and don’t take enough risks with photos I want to take, or with my words the words. I think the more I learn to use my camera the more I’ll feel at ease with getting out there. I know this prompt has nothing to do with weakness, but I think it ties in to why I photograph and will help me find my eye. 
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adam turns one

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play date by the pool
So, why photography? Because I like the raw emotion it can bring out of people and that it forces me out of my comfort zone. I realize the photos above don’t necessarily encompass that, but that’s what I’m aiming for. Perhaps I’ll find a different “eye” along the way. 

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14 Comments

  1. Capturing and sharing emotion is a powerful motivation! I think you captured emotion in all of these, it's just that some of that emotion is lighter than others. It's a playful, fun emotion in play date by the pool as compared to the depth of homecoming. You know where you want to go on your journey, and it will be great to see what develops, how you further define the answer to Why photography? as you progress.

  2. I have to tell you that I am your newest follower. Just read your thoughts on photography (from Kat's class) and scrolled down thru your photos, and….I'm hooked. I am excited to see where this class takes not only myself, but now YOU too! :).

    Kathy

  3. This is a great post. I did feel the emotion in your photos. I especially felt the Homecoming photos – I've experienced those exact feelings when my husband came back from Iraq several years ago.

  4. I also love to write and hope that over the next few months/years I can learn to marry these two passions in one form or another!

    The photos you shared here are truly narratives – an entire story can be understood in a single image. I LOVE that!

    I admire you for wanting to get our of your comfort zone — I have have to be forced out (kicking and screaming I might add) — but perhaps that is what I need to do in order to progress to the next level.

  5. I'm finally getting to see the responses to Lesson #1 that I didn't get to last week.

    Wanting to have an emotional impact on your readers when writing seems perfectly natural to me; I think all of your images above show you're able to do that with your photographs too. And I was glad to be reminded to take more risks myself.

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