What Photography Means to Me

Two weeks ago I posted photography tips from some of my favorite photographers and although I really wanted to collaborate with these talented women I also wanted their tips to better my own photography.

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I’ve been passionate about photography for as long as I can remember. My first camera was a hot pink point and shoot that I ended up losing in Disney World (which my dad never let me hear the end of).

What Photography Means to Me - Working On Working Mom {dot com}

I can honestly say that I inherited my love of photography from my parents. Our house was always filled with photos; photos of my brothers and me and photos of the places we’d been.

What Photography Means to Me - Working On Working Mom {dot com}

When I was in high school my friends and I took black and white photography classes. We would go into school with a roll of film, we’d develop the film ourselves, we’d develop the negatives into a proof sheet, we’d pick the photos we liked, and we’d develop them into beautiful black and white eight by tens. That’s seriously awesome stuff for a 15 year old!

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As I got older I still loved photography and I even took some more classes in college. I took pictures of everything, and I was always excited to drop off undeveloped negatives, unsure about what I was going to get back.

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Then came digital photography and everything changed. I stopped printing photos, almost completely. I had pictures in digital folders that I’d look through here and there, but I didn’t see them or enjoy them as much as I used to. But I kept taking pictures, especially after Jack was born.

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And now there is blogging. And blogging has been a blessing and curse for me and my photography. There are bloggers out there who are amazing photographers, legit amazing, and that is seriously intimidating! But on the other hand, blogging has given me a wonderful outlet for my photography and I’ve met some amazing photographers who have helped me master my craft.

When I started this post, I wrote a whole paragraph about how submitting to Food Gawker and getting rejected time after time really had an impact on my photographic ego, but since then I actually got one of my photos accepted! I know it shouldn’t be, but it is validation for me and my photography.

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As I am reading more and writing more I am realizing that I am a good photographer and that I still have a lot to learn. But most importantly I am passionate about photography, I always have been and I always will be!

What does photography mean to you? How has your relationship with photography changed over the years?

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15 Responses to What Photography Means to Me

  1. Michelle March 19, 2014 at 11:27 am #

    I feel like I am constantly improving…always a work in progress. I do the same as you, try to learn from photographers I admire! I must have missed your post about FoodGawker but I had never heard of that site…what is it? Congrats on getting your photo accepted!
    Michelle recently posted…Mexican Appetizer: Roasted Tomato, Corn and Shrimp QuesadillasMy Profile

    • Angela Gilmore March 19, 2014 at 2:18 pm #

      Thanks Michelle! FoodGawker is a site for food photography (or food porn). They are very selective and if you ‘Google Food Gawker rejections’ you will find an endless supply of rejections stories from frustrated bloggers. FoodGawker is like a selective Pinterest and it’s really excited to get accepted. You should definitely check it out and I really think your “Creamy Citrus Black Bean Soup” picture has a good chance at being accepted; it’s worth a shot, and it’s a nice source of traffic!

  2. Tamara March 19, 2014 at 1:26 pm #

    My first camera was a neon yellow L.A. Brites one by Vivitar! My sister had it in hot pink and I stole hers.
    And I took my first photography classes at 15 too – in the darkroom at school. One of my photos made it to the art show in town and I’ve been hooked ever since!
    FoodGawker seems intimidating! Their criticisms make me nervous!
    Tamara recently posted…Goodbye To You.My Profile

    • Angela Gilmore March 19, 2014 at 2:22 pm #

      Yes!! L.A. Brites!! Thank you! I kept thinking L.A. Looks and I couldn’t find anything about a camera! That’s the one I had, the hot pink one! And seriously the criticisms from FoodGawker made me want to stop blogging for a while. I completely stopped publishing recipes because I lost all faith in my photography. I know it shouldn’t mean that much, but it did. And when I found out I got a picture accepted finally I felt like I won the lottery!

      Do you still have the photo that made it to the show in town?

      • Tamara March 19, 2014 at 2:24 pm #

        I can’t believe we had the same camera! And I bet my parents still have the photo. It was enlarged to 8 x 10, I believe. It was of flowers trying to escape from a chain link fence. My teacher said it was “deep”. And funny because I never take flower photos now!
        (or food photos, for that matter)
        Tamara recently posted…Goodbye To You.My Profile

  3. Katie @ Pick Any Two March 19, 2014 at 2:30 pm #

    It seems to me that most creative endeavors, including both photography and writing, often involve a lot of rejection! Like you point out, the key is to take that and use it to make ourselves better. Congrats on your photo acceptance!
    Katie @ Pick Any Two recently posted…Will This Make Healthy Eating Easier?My Profile

    • Angela Gilmore March 21, 2014 at 9:48 am #

      Thanks Katie! And I am so bad about rejection especially when it comes to something I’m passionate about like music, writing, and photography. I can think of painful rejections with each, and the impact was always lasting. I know I shouldn’t be so easily discouraged, and it’s really something I need to work on. I do always try to use the rejection as a learning tool, just sometimes it takes a little while to recover first.

  4. Hannah March 20, 2014 at 8:15 pm #

    Now you’re the one inspiring me! I have to say, as much as I love your food photos, your portraits are really stunning. The boys splashing in the water is an incredible shot!
    Hannah recently posted…For the Love of ChocolateMy Profile

    • Angela Gilmore March 21, 2014 at 9:51 am #

      Thanks so much Hannah, that means a lot coming from you. I was really happy when I got that shot with the boys, that’s my son and my nephew and, they were having so much fun. I love when I can look at a photo and feel the same feeling I had when I first took it.

  5. Crystal March 21, 2014 at 10:13 am #

    Congrats on getting your photo accepted! I know many others who are still trying. Love your photography! :)
    Crystal recently posted…What Having Five Kids Has Taught MeMy Profile

    • Angela Gilmore April 18, 2014 at 1:50 pm #

      Thanks so much Crystal, it was so satisfying! And thank you for your kind words.

  6. LaKita March 23, 2014 at 7:59 pm #

    Wow…Congratulations on making Food Gawker…that is so awesome. I’ve heard it’s pretty tough to be selected so I have not even tried yet. Your pictures look great!! I feel like photography is something that I am just beginning to scratch the surface. I have lots to learn.

    • Angela Gilmore April 18, 2014 at 1:52 pm #

      Thanks LaKita, it took a while, but I’m glad I finally made it! I am still learning too, and it’s the openness to learning that helps me improve.

  7. Leilani April 15, 2014 at 11:47 pm #

    I loved this post! Though I’m a little late to the game in seeing it I guess. Congrats on your food gawker acceptance! I love photography, though I’m no professional. I did a blog post on when I decided I could call myself a photographer a few weeks ago. I linked to it with this comment :) I also love how blogging personally about my family has encouraged me to take more meaningful pictures of my kids. Have you discovered the website click it up a notch? It’s wonderful.

    • Angela Gilmore April 18, 2014 at 11:49 am #

      Thanks Leilani! I am on my way to your post now, thanks for sharing! I haven’t heard of that website, I’ll definitely check it out!

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