My mom loves to take photos of me. She especially loves to capture ones of me working. But also enjoys taking portraits of me that show my beautiful face and my sweet adoring eyes!
When she takes the photos of me working, or the occasional ones of us together, she does it without any help from another person. She spends a lot of time thinking about the angle to shoot, the settings on the camera, and the lighting. I am here to say that I think she is very creative with the way she sets everything up!
A close-up photo showing my mom’s reflection in my eye!
My mom has always had an interest in photography. From what she has told me she took many, many photos of my brother Eric while he was growing up. And over the years lots of photos of the various dogs she has owned. But overall she had very little experience with photographing black dogs.
Quite a while back my mom put her love of photography aside. This was early on when she was adjusting to the changes in her physical abilities. And getting used to being fully dependent on the wheelchair. But she was missing the fun and creativity of the photography that she greatly enjoyed.
Her interest in photography rekindled when she had my sister, Onyx. Remember that I told you about her and my other family members in My pesky little sister! post? Onyx was quite special. She got my mom back to doing a few different things that she wasn’t expecting. Like photography and dog shows!
With Onyx being black, and my mom not having very much knowledge with the technical parts of photography back then, her photos of Onyx often looked like black blobs. She was encouraged by a friend to join a Flickr photo group for Flat-Coated Retrievers. Her friend thought this could be a good way for my mom to meet others and learn more about photography.
Flickr is an online photo-sharing site. There are different types of groups you can join. Some are for sharing photos of specific subjects while others offer photo assignments for working toward specified goals. Or you can just use it to post and share your photos with friends and family. If you would like to see my mom’s photos that she has posted on her Flickr page you can check it out here.
A photo of my sister, Onyx!
The Flickr group members helped my mom begin to learn how to take better photos of black dogs. As she took more photos of Onyx she realized the limitations of her current camera. She saved gift cards that were received as birthday and Christmas gifts until she had enough to buy a better camera. Have you ever wanted something that you had to save for so you could buy it? It sure is a good feeling when you can finally make that purchase!
The year that I became my mom’s partner she joined a different Flickr group that had bi-weekly assignments. This meant that she had a specified topic to use for creating photos for each assignment. I soon learned that the camera meant we were going to have fun together. And I would be getting lots of treats!
A fun photo collage my mom made with photos of me!
Through the help and support of the other group members, her photography continued to improve. With her love of reading, she also was reading a lot of photography books. But she still wanted to learn more!
Remember in my post Training plans and homework! how I told you about the online dog training classes my mom takes at the Fenzi Dog Sports Academy? Well, much to her delight they started offering some photography classes, too! The instructor for these classes is an awesome dog photographer who has helped my mom learn more than she ever thought possible. My mom has taken every photography class offered. And most of them more than once!
The past few months my mom has had some progression and changes with her disability. There has been an overall loss of strength which she kept thinking would return. But as of right now that hasn’t happened. One of the things that she has found most difficult with these changes has been her inconsistent ability to pick up and hold her camera.
I have missed having my mom take photos of me. And that special time we are together doing something she loves to do. But I know my mom will readjust and find new ways to get back to her photography fun. As I’ve told you before, she has that stick to it attitude and always seems to find ways to push through so she can keep doing the things she most enjoys!
A hundred photos of me!