In the last month or so, I've been looking to reach out to other photographers for networking, advice, and even just to talk photography because it's my favorite topic of conversation :) I've been super impressed because it turns out that there are a ton of great resources for this kind of thing. Facebook alone has like 55 million photography groups you can become a part of.

One of the groups I'm now a part of does weekly photography challenges, which I'm super excited about. They always have cool themes and really inspire you to think creatively about your photography. Right now I'm in a bit of a slow time in my business (just that time of year) and I feel like I haven't touched my camera for a while. I'm looking forward to having a reason once a week to just sit down, me and my camera, and work on my skills.

This week's challenge was to produce a bit of black and white photography. Creating beautiful black and whites is hard, f'reals. These photos aren't merely black and white but, as my photography group mentions, "combine black and white in a continuum producing a range of shades of gray." Because of that, there are multiple factors that come into play when editing a black and white photo. 

Anyhoo, I found some time yesterday to work on my challenge and I learned a lot! For example:

- I realized that I'm mildly uncomfortable in front of the camera. It was good for me though, helped me understand what all of my clients feel like when I'm taking their photos.

- Lighting is tricky....I've always been aware of this but even more so now. The way you light your subject not only enhances or takes away from the quality of photo, but it results in a certain mood or feeling. You really have to think about how to use lighting based on the subject, background, etc.

- It's darn near impossible to take a picture of someone in glasses without getting glare. Hence the spectacle free Missy face you see below. I need to practice more with that.

Here's what I ended up with.....


And here's a few of me and my mini photo bomber......she's pretty cute so I'm cool with it :)