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My photography journey

The photo calendar team

We've nearly all got at least one baby picture that surfaces on our Birthday, or on those proud parent moments. Whether we were little and sat in the bath, blowing out the candles on our Birthday cake or falling asleep in our food. We look back at that picture and either enjoy or regret that moment in time that it captures.

That's the magic of photos though isn't it, they might only capture the smallest moment in time, but the best of them last a lifetime. They stay with us and remind us of our loved ones, our pets, being children again or our children being little again. Almost like they can transport us back to that moment in time, even if just for a second.

When I was growing up, I was lucky enough to have a dad that loved taking photos. He always had a camera with him, even before we all had cameras on our mobile phones. Even though we'd all groan at the time, he'd capture a family photo at my Nan's house every Christmas Day, group pictures at our Birthday parties, and more holiday shots than we really had time to look at. The sorts of things I look back at now and smile about.

I wouldn't always groan though because really, even through my awkward teenage years with my fluffy hair and Peter Andre t-shirt on, I loved looking back at my dad's pictures. Ok, I didn't always enjoy the photos of myself, but my dad had a great skill for setting the scene and creating interest in even the simplest of photos and it was this skill that inspired me.

My dad started me off with some basic cameras, and before I knew it I had quite a collection of photos of my friends and the cats on the farm. The photos weren't great to start with, but I loved trying to put the skills my dad taught me to the test and I even loved waiting for the film to be developed. By the time I left home in my early 20's my pictures were getting better and I was a huge fan of taking selfie's and far too many pictures on holiday.

As my photography developed, my growing skills along with my ability to create simple designs and probably a few other things, landed me a job. Though photography was only the smallest part of my job, I was lucky enough to be given the opportunity to take photos of international rugby players and even Peter Andre in person, not just on my t-shirt. Though the bit I loved the most was the party photos, especially at Christmas. It was here I found that my normal tentative self came alive and with a camera in my hand I could talk to anyone. It led to some interesting nights, random conversations and some rather hilarious photos that everyone would line up at my desk to see. Though this didn't last forever and I handed over my beautiful work camera when my son came along.

One of my favourite photos I've taken at the farm

dAfter spending around 20 months or more being a mum and taking far too many pictures of my little boy doing just about anything, I started to think that I was just going to end up being that mum who always had a camera and far too many pictures of my baby. Then an opportunity came along. The opportunity to turn my visits to CaenhillCC with countless photos into something I could share, and with my dad back coaching me again I started to capture his beautiful animals and moments of farm magic.

After having adored my dad's pictures of the farm and the photo calendars he produced for a few years now, this was (and still is) a huge honour, even if I was just doing it for the love. My teacher and my role model now trusted me to take on the photographer role at his project and share our pictures with the world and to top it all off, he recently handed over the 2021 calendar to me as well.

I honestly can't believe that this year the photos myself and my dad have taken together with support from my little farmer will be making their way to people's homes. That the outlet for my growing passion is moving beyond Twitter and Instagram to something people might actually display. That although I'm mostly a mum, a daughter, a wife, I'm earning something better than a wage and that's the opportunity to share my passion, because every day I'm rewarded by the likes, shares, comments, and now sales of our calendar.

Though it's currently still less than a year into my photo journey with CaenhillCC, I can honestly say I've learnt a lot. I've learnt to keep my focus, even with an emu trying to go through my pocket, I've learnt that sometimes the best photos take patience, even if you have a cow running towards you through sunflowers, but most importantly I've learnt that photos can do more than share memories each Birthday. They can share happiness, they can inspire, they can connect us and most importantly, share magic. 

Stay at home parent

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Saturday, 31 October 2020