Every day is an opportunity to learn
I’m constantly absorbing information. I watch, I read, I listen. I’m always open to broadening my horizons and learning new things. If I have a passion for something I’ll try and teach myself everything I can about that topic. From guitar to scrapbooking, I’ve tried my hand at a lot of things.
Everything I’ve done with my blog has been achieved through self-learning. It wasn’t easy but over the last few years, I’ve taught myself the ins and outs of WordPress, coding and the basics of photography. While I’m proud of how far I’ve come, I do realise that there’s always room to improve.
When the opportunity arose to collaborate with AIB and improve my skills, I jumped at the chance. While I was content with the images I was producing with my camera, I knew I wasn’t using it to its full capability. Again, I taught myself how to use my DSLR but most of what I shot was in auto and I didn’t understand a lot of the technical details. To help me upskill, AIB supported me by providing me with a new camera, the beautiful Olympus Pen EL-8, and a one-on-one masterclass with Ruth Medjber.
This Sunday I had my masterclass with Ruth and WOAH. She blew my mind. Ruth put together the most comprehensive 5-6 hour day of learning. We started with 2-3 hours of theory before even touching the camera. I learnt everything from how the inside of a camera works to one of the most important things, the exposure triangle. While I had a basic understanding of aperture, shutter speed and ISO, I had no idea what the numbers really meant and how important they were.
One of the best parts of the day was when we went out to shoot. Taking everything I’d just learnt, we ventured out to put it into practice. I’ve got to admit, Ruth was an amazing teacher. Instead of holding my hand and telling me what to do, she stepped back and made me figure out for myself why a certain shot didn’t look right. She supplied me with the tools but it was up to me to put them to good use.
Before & After
Above I’ve included a before and after. The left is my very first shot and the right is what I took after quite a bit of trial and error. I actually can’t get over the difference between the two.
The major elements of achieving your perfect shot include; positioning, the exposure triangle, cropping and then finally, post-production editing. For the final shot, I positioned my model away from the wall. If a subject is positioned close to a wall they’ll appear very 2D. I used my 35mm lens and set the ISO to 400, shutter speed to 1/200 and aperture to f1.8. Keeping the rule of thirds in mind, I left space above and cropped the shot just above her knees. Lastly, I adjusted the lighting and contrast in Lightroom, got rid of blemishes and sharpened and whitened the eyes in Photoshop.
Overall, I feel like I got so much out the masterclass. I’m no longer scared of shooting in manual and have a grasp of Lightroom and Photoshop. I definitely have no excuse now and will definitely be pushing myself more when it comes to the content I create for my blog!
*This post is sponsored by AIB. If you want more information please see my Disclaimer page