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Part 3: Let’s Learn!

Why I Became a Wedding Photographer : Part 3

Let’s Learn!

Read Part 1: The Beginning
Read Part 2: When it all Clicked for Me

So here I was, 20 years old and a two time college drop out, completely lost on how to make my new-found passion a career. That summer I photographed my very first wedding. I didn’t have any idea what I was doing, I was using my dad’s camera, since I didn’t even have one yet. I played around with some truly terrible editing techniques to try to get my photos looking better (what was I thinking?!) since I didn’t know how to get those effects, like a blurry background in camera. So instead I just blurred the whole photo. Lovely.

My parents bought me my first DSLR, a little Canon Rebel T3 (that I still have) and a few basic lenses for Christmas that year. Thanks mom and dad! I started shooting all the time, but was never very happy with the results. I knew what I wanted my photos to look like, but I still didn’t know how to get them there.

I took to the internet to learn more. Finally I found an online/at home photography course so I could start learning. I begged my mom and dad to loan me the $900 for the course, which they so kindly gave me. My parents were the biggest reason that I was able to start my photography career. Thanks again, mom and dad!

I was so excited when my  course materials arrived. I drove right in, pouring through my workbooks and videos and soaking up as much as I could. It helped, for sure. I learned some basics about photography that I really needed to know. But I found myself wanting more than what these courses could give me. They were a little outdated, with many, many references to film and trends that were long since retired. I grew more and more frustrated that these courses weren’t giving me what I needed.

nothing says true love like posing in front of traffic, right?

So now what? Where do I go from here? I know I needed to learn, but I didn’t know where to get the knowledge. I wasted a lot of time feeling sorry for myself and wondering why I wasn’t just all of a sudden amazing at photography. I spent a lot of time on the internet looking up local photographers. I reached out to a few who offered mentoring, but I couldn’t afford their rates. I spent more time feeling sorry for myself. I was real productive during this time.

Finally, when I was 22 I stumbled upon Corrie Kraft Photography and was hooked. She was amazing! Her photographs were stunning, and spoke to me on so many levels. This was what I wanted to be, but didn’t know how to get there. I took a HUGE step out of my comfort zone and sent her a message, asking if I could buy her coffee and pick her brain. I waited so so nervously, terrified of no answer, or even worse, getting a “no way, you’re crazy” response. Well, Corrie did neither of those things. She responded with an excited “of course!” and we got to setting up a date!

Since wedding season was just starting for Corrie, finding a time to meet was hard and we weren’t able to connect right away. Shortly after though, she posted that she was hiring an intern and I applied immediately. After a filling out a few questionnaires and waiting on pins and needles, I got the email that she had chosen me! Ahhh!! I cried when I got that email, I was so happy. Finally! After 2 years of not getting anywhere, finally, I was getting somewhere!

Stay tuned for the next chapter!

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