As I have mentioned before, I am always looking to improve my photography.  You can’t always get out and shoot everyday, but you have to try to do it as much as possible to keep yourself sharp.  I have received a ton of positive support about my photography from friends and family.  I always respond to those who think they aren’t as good or don’t have the skills that I do, that practice makes perfect.  There are tons of  photographers that make me feel like a beginner.  But, I don’t get intimidated by them.  I keep trying and perfecting my photography to work towards the level they are at.  I make sure that I do my best to learn how they did what they did and see if I can duplicate it. 

Today’s blog is about how I keep myself sharp when I can’t get out to shoot.  I usually try to find something around the house to shoot using my studio lights.  If the weather isn’t too bad, I like to step out on the back deck and shoot the sunset or the yard itself.  We get some pretty beautiful colors in the afternoon when the sunsets behind the house.  Sunsets are timeless.  Everyone loves them, and I am no exception.  This is one I took that is probably my favorite so far.  We have trees behind us, so it blocks a little of the sunset, but we usually still get a good show.

After the leaves fall, I get into a ‘photographic slump’ and it is more important than ever for me to keep myself actively shooting.  This blog partly to do just that.  It will mentally stimulate me.  It will also keep me thinking about photography constantly.  Most importantly, it will force me to take more pictures so I have content for these blogs.  It’s a win-win situation.  The next picture is of the backyard on a cool fall day.  I love the dramatic sky in it.

Another contributing factor to keeping yourself sharp in the downtime is reading blogs, magazines and forums.  My favorite forum is Movie Photo Forums.  The people there have helped me dramatically in the growth of my photography.  They are constantly giving positive encouragement and challenges to make me a better photographer.  Plus, the family feel there makes it a lot of fun.  A while back, one of the member go into shooting panorama shots and I was intrigued.  I had never tried that.  Something new.  The lightbulb flickered.  So, I tried it out.  I now love to shoot panoramas, and every time I get the chance I do it.  Here is one I took out the that back door. 

If you are into photography, please keep working towards your goals.  I can’t say that enough.  If you struggle – Read, ask questions, and practice.  You can do it.  Never stop trying. 

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