I submitted this photo to be critiqued by John Greengo in a Creative Live course called Summer Photography Essentials. I was so excited to get John’s feedback as I really appreciate his eye for photography. I am also slowly working my way through his Fundamentals of Digital Photography course which I couldn’t recommend more. For this image he suggested I fix the lens distortion that was curving the horizon line (which I have done) and lighten the shadows in the dock a little more. He said he really liked the photo and even went so far as to say he wished he had this shot! Thanks for the opportunity to share my work and receive some helpful advice. 

#RockYourHandwriting Day 16: Note Taking

I normally take notes on a separate notepad and then transcribe them into my #BulletJournal in a more organized fashion later on.

This is a rare look at my super-fast handwriting while taking notes on @iamlisajacobs #CreativeLive class earlier this month ☺️
Paper airplanes inspired by @therevisionguide 😁

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#planwithmechallenge Day 3: Note Taking

This prompt couldn’t have fallen on a better day! I spent the day at the #creativelive studio taking feverish notes during @iamlisajacobs class: Turn Your #Etsy Shop into a Sales Machine.

These notes started right in my daily page and now span 3 pages! They’ll get indexed in the front of my #bulletjournal for quick reference later.

Can’t wait to be on stage tomorrow talking Instagram strategy! If you’re looking to up your Instagram game, you should definitely tune in! You can RSVP to the live broadcast for free with the 👆🏻link in bio 👆🏻😁

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creativeLIVE :: 13 Lessons from Matthew Jordan Smith

This weekend I had the joy and the privilege to watch Matthew Jordan Smith’s creativeLIVE course on Fashion and Beauty Photography.

This is what I learned from a sloppy first-time watch of the live workshop. 
The only reason I’m able to comprise this list is because I had pen and paper at the ready throughout. 

  1. Dedication is not supposed to be easy. 
    You gotta want it! The barriers you face are there to keep others out - those who don’t want it as much as you. Embrace your obstacles!
  2. “Later” never comes. Go out and do it!
  3. Every picture has a hero. 
    Find the focus of your image. Make that element shine! (eyes, skin, hair, clothes, accessories etc.) 

  4. T.E.A.M. = Together Each Achieves More
    Surround yourself with the best! Get the absolute best team you can find! They are there to hold everything together. You are there to create! You can’t do it alone.
  5. You are the director - so direct!
    Actors want to be directed. Models want to be directed. Never dismiss your own opinion. You are the director, so don’t be scared to change things up!
  6. Learn the language of opposites!
    When shooting for a layout, shoot images that are very different. Use contrasting colors, perspectives, motions. Place two pictures side by side that show opposites. The result will be extremely powerful!
  7. Music saves the day!
    This is a great way to set the mood. Prepare a music playlist for every shoot! 

  8. Anyone can send an email. 
    When approaching potential clients, photo editors or photographers you want to assist for, you have to stand out from the crowd. Make an effort! Be different! Don’t aim to just get by. Aim to be the best!

  9. Put your LOVE in your work!
    Build your career by shooting what you LOVE, not what you LIKE. Discover your own point of view and show it!

  10. Don’t experiment with your clients!
    Keep your experimenting to you personal work. Know your gear, know your lighting - keep testing, testing, testing. 

  11. Spend time studying the great photographers.
    Richard AvedonAnnie Leibovitz (DVD: Life Through a Lens), Dave HillJeremy CowartJoey L. , Zack AriasChase JarvisCliff MautnerSeagram PearceJoel GrimesGregory HeislerPeter Hurley - the list goes on and on. Find your own favorites and figure out why they appeal to you!


  12. Seek inspiration in YOUR OWN LIFE!
    Study your own everyday life and try to implement it into your photography. Take special note of the things you do without thinking (tying your shoes, brushing your teeth, putting your socks on, preparing breakfast, typing on a keyboard [just noticed I only us my left pinky for pressing shift and tab. nothing else. awesome.])
    These peculiarities are part of your uniqueness. Let them shine through in your work! This is how you find your own personal style.

  13. Always Dream Big!

If I missed any good points (I must have!), please feel free to share them!

Follow Matthew’s blog for more amazing advice!


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Our instructors are experts, industry leaders, professionals who are selected based on their expertise and practical knowledge. The workshops are seminar style, with a live studio audience. 

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