Monday, March 10, 2014

Photography Challenge - Day 1

I stumbled upon Click it up a Notch a few weeks ago and instantly added my email to their newsletter so that I could receive photography tips.  Then a last week I decided I wanted to buy Courtney's photography challenge e-book because I really want to take better photos of the girls.  So I thought I would document my progress as I make my way through the 30 challenges/tips.  After one day, I already feel like I'm taking better pictures, so I HIGHLY recommend this ebook!  Obviously, I'm not going to go into any detail for the challenges since that's what the book is for, but I will tell you what my challenge was for each day as I progress.

Challenge 1 - Focal Points

So, I had no idea I could change where in the frame my camera focuses.  Now I know, and I'm never going back to plain all over focus!  I love being able to control that one aspect!

Over the course of the afternoon I took a lot of pictures.  I would have taken more of Mackenzie, but she had an attitude and didn't want her picture taken.  (Not looking forward to the teen years if this is what she's like at 5!)

I tried to focus on the girls feet, but also took other pictures while changing the focal point in the picture.  All the pictures below include my straight out of camera image (left or top) and my edited image (right or bottom).  I used my Canon 50mm lens to take all of the photos, but I'll list the details of each shot below if you are interested.

Mackenzie's  5 1/2 year old feet!
f/1.8   1/80ss   ISO-1600

Meredith's 2 1/2 year old feet...while moving on a treadmill going 1/2 mile and hour.
f/1.8   1/125ss   ISO-800

Miranda's itty bitty feet!
f/1.8   1/80ss   ISO-1600

Now for the miscellaneous photos of the girls!

I love this photo of Meredith because it's how I see her every day...smiling and hair in her face!
f/2.0   1/60ss  ISO-1600

Meredith has so much fun playing on the treadmill at it's slowest speed.  She was all smiles while I snapped away!
f/2.8   1/50ss   ISO-1600

Just hanging...
f/1.8   1/125ss   ISO-800

Meredith "riding" the treadmill to the end.
f/1.8   1/125ss  ISO-800

A LOT of 5 year old attitude!
f/2.0   1/60ss   ISO-1600

And now for the super cute baby love!  Total coincidence that she's wearing her valentine's outfit, but it looks great in her photos and says exactly what I'm thinking! ;)
f/2.2   1/125ss   ISO-800

f/1.8   1/200ss   ISO-1600

I knew this was going to be a great photo as soon as I saw it on the camera!  I LOVE her face.  Lucky for me, she just started sitting up last week, so I finally got a picture of her when she's not lying down somewhere!
f/2.2   1/125ss  ISO-400

One of my favorite things about changing the focal point is shown in the picture below.  Although the background is only a blanket on a carpet, I love the dramatic focus of Miranda at the bottom of the picture while the rest is blurry!  Those cheeks! ;)
f/1.8  1/200ss   ISO-1600

And last of all, I couldn't resist getting a picture of Miranda's little belly button!  Again, the foreground and background are blurry, but Miranda is in focus!  I LOVE choosing my focus!
f/2.0   1/200sss   ISO-1600

So, that's day 1.  I just finished taking day 2's pictures today which took 3 different days to get the pictures I want for the particular challenge.  That means I won't be finished with the 30 day challenge in 30 consecutive days, but that's ok.  It's about the improvement for me, not the time.  I've only uploaded part of my day 2 photos and I can't wait to see what my newest pictures look like.  That's the kind of excitement I want to have and why I'm doing this challenge.  No more blah pictures...hopefully!


  1. Isn't your word for 2014 Focus? Beautiful pics.

    1. It's I'm "embracing" my camera this year!


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