"Some journeys are direct, some are heroic, some are fearful and muddled. But every journey, honestly undertaken, stands a chance of taking us toward the place where our deep gladness meets the world's deep need." Parker Palmer
For years it has been a dream of mine to go to an in person photography workshop to learn from one of my favorite artists. After a few years in the business and my husbands sweet encouragement, I searched for the perfect one to meet my needs and landed on the Wildflowers Workshop led by the incredibly talented Joy Prouty. I have followed Joy's work for years and it has always resonated with me. Her ability to evoke deep emotion in her imagery is really incredible and I love her complete honesty and transparency in her personal work. I identified with her so much as a believer, mother and wife that I knew it would be a good fit. And it was. I went to this workshop really seeking insight on balance as a creative, a business owner and a mother and left challenged and stretched in all these areas. Although we had two shoots while there, this workshop wasn't very much about the technicalities of shooting but more focused on our artistry and developing that, which was exactly what I needed. I was challenged to shoot the things that make me feel alive as an artist. And although, I feel like over the past year or so I've begun to focus my work in that direction, my time at this workshop really breathed new life into this pursuit in my work.
My time with Joy made me look a bit more closely at what I love to shoot. What makes me love to pick up my camera and in turn create beautiful imagery. My photography journey has evolved quite a bit since I started my business 3 years ago. I have figured out that I am passionate about shooting families, but not always the perfectly posed traditional family portraits. Rather, I love to spend time with my clients, connecting with them, learning their stories, and photographing the season of their family, no matter what that may be. One of the things I wrote down in my journal that weekend that Joy said that I have gone over and over again to myself is that you cannot compare one persons beautiful with another person's beautiful. Sometimes life is not always golden sunlit fields and perfect smiles(sometimes it is!). Sometimes life is a sink full of dirty dishes and a tangled mess of hair and to me that is just as beautiful and equally deserving to be captured. So, as I embrace that, the joys and messes of these beautiful, imperfect lives we live, I hope you'll join me as my business grows and changes as I develop as an artist.
I am so thankful to Joy and the 16 other photographers I met for shaking up the creative in me. For encouraging me, challenging me, and giving me so many things to think about. Over a month later, I'm still mulling over all the things we discussed. I am really excited for all the wonderful things that are ahead for my work and for my clients. A few changes are already in the works and I'm excited to share them with you in the coming weeks. If you are a photographer considering Joy's workshop, DO IT. Just do it. If you aren't a photographer but love beautiful photographs, you should really follow her work. Here is her website. Go get a cup of coffee, a warm blanket to snuggle up to and enjoy. :)
Here are some pictures from my weekend in Austin....