As the Capturing Childhood: Collect the Moments photography course finished while we were still on holiday, I didn't get a chance to properly share my thoughts on it. Or picspam you with some of my favourite holiday shots. So let's kill two birds with one stone...
I can't overstate how happy I am to have been on the course; the instructors were knowledgable and accessible, the modules informative and well-rounded, and the community of people taking the course were so engaging and supportive. Like many people, my photography was predominantly focussed on a 'look at me / look at the camera' remit which can produce good shots but also lots where the kids looked forced or unnatural. This course really challenged me to look at the camera as a bystander or a witness: to capture the mood, tell a story, show the personality of the subject.
These are my favourite shots from our day at the Connecticut Science Center (which by the way I highly recommend if you're in the area!). Rather than lots of 'look at the camera / show me what you're doing' pics, I was trying to capture Jamie and Maia caught in the wonder of all that science. The only picture that is 'staged' I re-focussed so that while he thought I was taking a straight-up shot of his creation, I was actually taking a picture of his fiercely proud face.
This collage tells the very sad story that the rules of baseball are hard. From the back it just looks like a very sweet shot of friendship but by orbitting around you can see that two year olds, despite their reputations, are indeed capable of extreme compassion.
Or how about the story of 'I (deliberately) got my glasses wet, my eyes are all wet, ergo I don't need to wear glasses on the beach or probably ever'? Nice try, Maia.
Two girls sharing a hula hoop, boys playing in the background.
Pictures oozing with the personality of the subjects, but still natural.
And the technical information about lighting, focus, movement and framing were clearly helpful too. Man, I really needed some technical help.
I think one of the biggest lessons I took from Capturing Childhood was that the journey to a picture is often just as good than the resulting picture. I think I love the shots of everyone reaching out to help Calvin onto the lifeguard's chair more than the posed one as it shows the dynamic in our family of closeness despite our distance.
Disclaimer: I received nothing in compensation for this review, I just couldn't recommend it enough! Capturing Childhood: Collect the Moments is just about to start a fresh session if you're interested.