Sunday, February 27, 2011

big girl

I thought I was whipped.  Beaten.  Bested by an inanimate object. 

I've never let myself fail at what I set out to do.  I have failed in life, have no doubt.  But not without giving my best effort.  When I run into any kind of insurmountable problem (something that seems to be impossible to solve), I tend to react emotionally for a bit, then step back and look at what is happening from every angle.  

It isn't that I am an optimist.  It is that I believe there is no problem in life that can't be solved.  If it can't be solved, then it at least can be worked through, or sometimes, at worst, endured.

Big Girl came into my life several months ago.  I've mentioned her several times.  She took Big Boy's place, because he was defective and uncooperative.  I thought when Big Girl arrived that I would be able to take her and conquer my world in photos.

Not so.  She was uncooperative and temperamental from the first day.  A hefty weight, she recorded every shake of my hand, took advantage of the fact that I am nearly blind, and scoffed at my attempts to record the beauty and magnificence around me.

But again I say, I have never failed, not with something I set out to learn.  I followed every clue online I could find, looked at the work of photographers I admired.  And struggled, making little progress.

So I kept reading, and reading, not really understanding the terms I was reading.  Until finally I ran across some articles online that opened my eyes.  Literally.  Or maybe it just took a while for it to soak in.  All of a sudden I understood some of what Big Girl has been trying to tell me.  I started listening to her.  She was never against me, she just took a deeper understanding than Little Girl did.

So this weekend we were on an outing with the twins, and I had a mission.  To FINALLY get some meaningful photographs that were intentional captures, and not accidents of nature, glitches.

And it worked!  I got several photos that were firsts for me.

Like this action shot of the twins.  This was the first time I captured movement on purpose.  Most of my photos have been headless blurs.  I've taken hundreds, thousands.  I know practice will improve it, but I was so excited to see this shot that I felt I had won a prize.

Then there was the shot of the kids in the stairwell at the tower on top of Mount Cheaha.  The highest place in Alabama, and I wanted a photo to remember it.  The kids stopped for a minute on a turn in the stairs and I saw the perfect photo opportunity.  I got the following shot.
Following are several more shots I took, what I feel are my best photos of the day, and show that I am making improvements in learning a new craft, a new skill.  One that will enable me to chronicle my familys' life, and the beauty of the world around me.

The way I see it.  The way I want to share it.  And so I share with you what I learned, discovered and thoroughly enjoyed this weekend.  And if you have something you are struggling to learn, or accomplish, remember that all things are possible.  Persevere.  It's worth it.



  1. Your grandchildren will be thankful someday for your persistence. Great shots! You've broken through another wall and stepped through.

  2. You have captured your grandchildren in a light that only grandparents know and can see. this is something they will cherish always

  3. thank you both so much for the comments! Part of me seeks to improve as a photographer because it means I am learning and my skill is growing. But the heart of me knows that with each photograph I take, I am leaving my legacy for my family, a part of me that is tangible.