I was sat in the garden of my Dads house yesterday, we had gone over there for the morning to see my Grandparents who were visiting from Wales. The girls were running around in the sunshine, we were all just chatting and relaxing at the table, and my 93 year old Grandpa turned to me and said 'The only thing is there is something missing today- where's your big camera Katie?'
It made me smile, firstly because he called it my big camera which is actually what I call it too, and secondly he noticed that I wasn't snapping away- usually if the weather is nice and we are outside, the camera will be there too. The funny thing was it actually was in the car I just hadn't bought it in yet, every time my Grandparents are here we take a few photos of them and the girls as I absolutely love capturing those memories. In a slightly morbid way, they are 93 and 90 and I just want to capture every single memory I can.
I ended up taking this photo, but it got me thinking about my camera and my love of photography. It's a running joke on both sides of my family now that if we are having any sort of special occasion, or sometimes even just utterly normal days too, then my big camera will be there. And if I haven't bothered to bring that then no doubt I will take at least a couple of photos on my iPhone instead. It's just become completely normal to me to take photos every single day, mainly on my phone more than anything else, but I guess that's our generation- we snap, share, take and preserve memories more than ever before.
I have always been 'the one' who likes to take photos. At school and then at uni, I was the one snapping every single moment of our nights out, so much so that my friends wouldn't ever bother taking their cameras out as they knew I would have mine and would capture the memories for us. Every time we went out at uni, bearing in mind that would be a few times a week, I would buy a disposable camera to take out with me. Even though I had a digital camera, I loved that feeling of going into Boots and getting them developed- we would spend ages laughing over our drunken antics and things from the night that we had forgotten.
In my final year of uni I met Mr E and we became great friends. He was quite interested in photography and on one holiday to Dubai with my Mum I decided to invest in my first DSLR while we were in duty free at the airport. I still remember being so excited about having this big camera and while we were on holiday I artistically shot photographs of cocktails and the beautiful surroundings of our hotel. When I got back to Leeds I got it into my head that I wanted to go back to university and study photography as I was at a little bit of a crossroads over what I wanted to do with my life. Luckily my parents said that was just not going to happen, at least not with them funding it, so that crazy idea never got put in place.
For a while I took lots of photos with my DSLR, but I didn't really know what to take them of. I had this lovely big camera but didn't really know how to use it, just using it on auto with the flash, and I didn't really like the results I was getting with it. I wasn't interested in taking photos of buildings, or nature, and so while I still took them of friends, eventually I got a little bored and so my DSLR went under the bed.
Fast forward a few years and Mads was born. For a while I still used my regular old compact digital camera as I was still in that period of time where you would go somewhere and then upload 112 photos to Facebook of your day out. (Does anyone else remember those days?!) But after a while I dusted off the thick layer of dust from my DSLR and got snapping.
For ages I snapped away on auto and then I started to get more into blogging and sharing photos, so I wanted to learn how to use my camera more. I started trying to teach myself how to shoot in manual and I think that's when my love of photography really exploded. I loved sharing my photos on my blog, loved taking photos of the girls and loved the buzz of when I took a lovely photo. I was suppose it was a little bit of everything that made me love taking photos- the fact I had my blog, the fact that I genuinely love photography and the fact that of course I was recording so many moments of my childrens lives. It genuinely has become one of my biggest passions.
I dread to think how many photos I have taken over the years. I go through 'phases' with my big camera, sometimes I won't get it out for a couple of weeks, preferring to use my iPhone, but on a holiday I may take up to 600 photos. Most of those I delete after we get home, I am quite ruthless with deleting them as you don't need 20 photos of the same scene, but I just love that I am capturing so much of our family life. Of course, my camera isn't out constantly, that wouldn't be much fun at all, but usually I take a couple of photos at the start of whatever we are doing, a couple in the middle and a couple at the end, and that generally works for me. Every year I make huge photo books of our year as a keep sake, although I still haven't made 2014- it's a mammoth job and I just don't have time at the moment, I really need to start making it.
I hope that when the girls are older, they will really appreciate having these moments recorded and I know when I am old and grey, I will love looking back at them all as well. I am so thankful to blogging for in part helping me capture these memories, of course I would have taken them anyway if I didn't have my blog, but perhaps I wouldn't have learnt to use my camera properly, or gone off to do certain things as a result, or perhaps take quite as many photos as I do now- and I am sure lots of other bloggers would agree with me.
I couldn't possibly pick a favourite photo out of all I have taken, in fact I couldn't probably even narrow it down to even twenty, but I thought I would set myself a little challenge to find fifteen photos that I really love- I wouldn't say they are my favourites of all time, but they are pretty high up in the ones I love. I have a photography page on my blog where I put photos I love on that has more, but here are fifteen of my favourites from over the years...
I love that my love of photography and of blogging has helped capture our most ordinary moments.