discount diamonds.

It just so happens that everything I have on my brain tonight is probably in some way potentially offensive or arguable.  Isn’t it interesting how that seems to happen?

Hahahaha… anyway, the last few weeks, and the two coming up, are absolutely packed with shooting.  I’ve never felt so blessed, and at the same time, completely overwhelmed.  But my clients make it so easy… even when I find myself completely exhausted and not wanting to “work”, I get to location and it’s like they lift me up.  I absolutely love capturing emotion in people… I love being able to trace the lines that connect a family, or lovers, or friends.  It’s like tangibly recording the energy that swirls around and binds them together.  It’s my pleasure to be the one that’s able to peek into love.

All of this being said, I have a bit of a rant.  Before I start, I’d like to say that this is not specifically directed at any one person, or people.  This is only an observation. Ok, does everyone have their “I’m not going to take this personally or get offended” pants on?  Good.  Here goes.  So, let’s say I got a speeding ticket and had to go to court.  It’s an easy case, so I decide to just represent myself.  I enter my plea, maybe get a bargain cause I’m nice about it, and go about my day.  Would it then be right for me to call myself a lawyer, or worse, a “professional lawyer”?  Ridiculous, right?  Yeah, that’s a bit what it feels like when anyone who buys a DSLR, shoots their friend’s family and then tells people they are a “photographer”.  It’s just a slap in the face to those who have spent years refining and perfecting their craft, their look, their style.  It floods the market with sub-standard work and makes it difficult for the industry as a whole.  I hardly feel right calling myself one, but somehow I know about 50 “pro-photographers”.  And most of them have stolen copies of Photoshop.  Guys.  You can’t steal the software that you’re using to make your money.  How can you expect someone to pay for your photos if you aren’t paying for what you use to produce them? For real?  A professional is someone who makes the bulk if not all of their money doing that particular thing.  If you love photography, awesome!!! Email someone, ask questions, get educated on your gear and how to use it.  Call yourself a hobbyist and practice.  Then graduate to professional.  Not the other way around. Again, if you think this is directed at you, you’re wrong.  I love seeing passion in people, I’m just tired of people asking me why I won’t do a session I invest 20 hours in for $50, cause this other pro-photographer will do it for that.  I’m sick of, when people ask me what I my job is, and I answer, “I’m a photographer”, them answering, “Right, but like, what else do you do?”  NOTHING.  I’m a photographer! It’s my job! Ok? Ok! 🙂

Here are some photos from the Whittington session this week.  They have an absolutely beautiful tract of land out in Pampa, with horses and everything!! It was so fun to just be able to walk around and shoot.  They are definitely a loving family, and all three kids are so well-behaved and sweet-hearted 🙂  I really enjoyed it!

And onto the second thing running around my brain this evening…..

It’s important to me that people know that I am in love with and am only sustained by Jesus.  I believe that He saved me and I know it whole-heartedly.  I’m just a little weary of where I stand on religion.  Church.  I heard in a sermon that the pastor was encouraging the congregation to, while out at dinner, chose a random table and pay for their meal.  I LOVE this.  I think that rules so much.  And of course, this applies to coffee or anything else.  Just random acts of kindness to make someone’s day better.  I back that so hard.  What bothers me is what came next.  The church had cards printed up with times of service, so after you do something to lift someone up, you give them this card.  I just don’t know how I feel about that.  It’s my belief that Love will speak for itself.  I also don’t think that loving people, or doing something nice for them, with a motive (Come to church! See things our way!) is really love at all.  And you know, if it were me, I’d almost feel obligated then to show up or repay this “debt”.  I have this friend, and he is the best example I’ve ever seen of genuinely loving people with no motive.  I just think he does it the right way.  He listens to people, he loves them, relates to them, and then when asked why he shines so bright, then he explains how Jesus changed him.  It’s so easy for people to hear what he’s saying because they know he actually cares, it’s not just words to try to make them be like him.  Anyway, I’m not saying I disagree with the card thing, I’m just not sure of it.  I understand the principle,  but I think I’d rather just be kind to people and let Love do the talking.

Just a few more weeks now, a few more weeks and then I’m running far, far away.  I’ve had opportunities this month that I never imagined would be real, and I’ve loved every second of it.  Now it’s time to go so far away that I’m out of the reach of anything that doesn’t lift me up.  Retreat, regroup.  Come back stronger.

“I’m all fire, Love, and I don’t want water, I want oxygen.”

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