Practice, Practice, Practice

[DJI Air 2s, Mode = Normal, ISO 100, 1/4000, ƒ/2.8, (35mm = 22)]

The pandemic cut the number of jobs most photographers and videographers were doing. It did give us time to practice, but it was hard some days to do anything.

Lately I have been trying to remind myself to push and take out the cameras when I can and shoot for myself.

[DJI Air 2s, Mode = Normal, ISO 110, 1/250, ƒ/2.8, (35mm = 22)] Amphitheater at a friend’s home in Fayetteville, GA.

Flying my drone is something that has helped a great deal this past couple years. It is still new to me and the perspectives are not something I see everyday walking around.

Delta Plane landing at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport [NIKON D5, 28.0-300.0 mm f/3.5-5.6, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 400, 1/4000, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 300)]

Sometimes I am on the ground looking up, as I did the other day in the parking lot of the Georgia International Convention Center in College Park, Georgia. I enjoy seeing things from a different perspective.

Springer Opera House [DJI Air 2s, Mode = Normal, ISO 150, 1/350, ƒ/2.8, (35mm = 22)]

While visiting my daughter in Columbus, Georgia the past couple of times I took my drone out and flew it. Since she works at the Springer Opera House which is a historic theater at 103 Tenth Street in Downtown Columbus, Georgia I flew it over the facility.

Springer Opera House [DJI Air 2s, Mode = Normal, ISO 150, 1/240, ƒ/2.8, (35mm = 22)]

Luck was on my side that day. The people at Springer saw the photos and realized a couple days later when they had a leak in the ceiling they could use my photos to find the leak.

[DJI Air 2s, Mode = Normal, ISO 120, 1/640, ƒ/2.8, (35mm = 22)]

I took out the drone earlier last month to show the work they were doing putting in 4 piers to help stabilize our foundation that was shifting. Now all this work in underground and unless you saw them put it in you would never know.

Engineered Solutions repairing our foundation with 4 piers [NIKON Z 6, VR Zoom 28-300mm f/3.5-5.6G IF-ED, Mode = Aperture Priority, ISO 5000, 1/400, ƒ/5.6, (35mm = 90)]

Of course I took some closeup shots as well.

New roof install from Findley Roofing [DJI Air 2s, Mode = Normal, ISO 100, 1/500, ƒ/2.8, (35mm = 22)]

In July we had our roof replaced due to hail damage. Here I took out the drone as well to get some photos for us to see what they were doing.

Look for those opportunities to Practice!

All these examples are just me showing that you can practice all the time. The thing that is happening is the same skills I am using for my personal projects will later be things I am called on to do for my clients.

Kona, Hawaii [DJI Air 2s, Mode = Normal, ISO 450, 1/13, ƒ/2.8, (35mm = 22)]

While in Hawaii I took my drone. Every year since 2006 I had been going to Kona, but have never seen the campus where I taught from the air. I could see how close we were to downtown Kona.

University of the Nations ~ YWAM [DJI Air 2s, Mode = Normal, ISO 120, 1/1250, ƒ/2.8, (35mm = 22)]

By just deciding to practice and have fun I was able to see the difference between daytime shooting and night time. I now have some examples of the same location day and night to help customers understand the advantages of each time for their projects.

Chelle Leary [NIKON Z 6, 24.0-105.0 mm f/4.0, Mode = Manual, ISO 100, 1/4, ƒ/4, (35mm = 52)]

My daughter likes to experiment as much as I, so for her college graduation shots we played around with colored gels. I really hadn’t used these in more than 15 years and pulling them out and trying something new was fun for both us us.

Practice is about experimenting and stretching yourself.

Artistically speaking, practice allows you to work out problems in technique that mean the difference between a really basic doodle and a really resolved piece of art. Drawing the same or similar subjects over and over again helps you to learn the subjects shape, form, and texture.

The more you practice, the better you will get. Being an artist is about experiencing new things and about individual creation. If you keep trying new mediums and new techniques you’ll learn to incorporate more of them into finished projects and round out your skill set.