Instagram to the max!

I'm running out of instagram titles for each of these be prepared, they might start getting weirder and weirder! Once again I hope you are enjoying my amazing phone photography skills.




So it's here, my last day of working at Ted's camera store. It will be an easy day, no customers, no uniform...just counting for stocktake. I've been working towards this for almost 5 years and it's hard to believe at the end of today I'll be a fulltime photographer...or in some photographers eyes 'a real photographer'. Yep, that has been said to me "you're only a real photographer if you're fulltime" and I say to that "what a load of crap".

I'm so thankful for my time working in a job that isn't my dream, it makes working from home now all the sweeter. I hear other photographers complaining about all the work they have to do and sometimes they seem to forget what an amazing job they have! Spend a week in retail and then see if you're still complaining about working from home. I'm so excited about getting time to exercise, keep my house clean, cook better and to have a little free time!

This is a little shout out to all the photographers who aren't fulltime. Those who stay up to the early hours of the morning editing, or barely have a social life because they have to balance two jobs! Just because your partner doesn't have a high paying job to support you in the early stages of you business or you need that little extra cash to make the mortgage payments...doesn't mean you are any less of a photographer. It's not like tonight as I finish work I'll suddenly become a better photographer because I'm fulltime. Take everything you can from working two jobs...for example time management (I got really good at this) and people skills (sometimes staying home in your pjs can make you a little slack in this area). I used to be embarrassed about working at Ted's, like it's uniform was a huge sign saying "Amanda's not a good enough photographer to work for herself". But now I don't care what people think, for these last few months I've worn my uniform with pride, taken crap from other photographers (customers in store) and become more and more thankful for all the things Ted's has taught me.

Here is a photo that my second shooter Tuli took of me at last weeks wedding. Note: I'm not grumpy in this photo, it's just my thinking face. Also notice my very dorky but practical double strap...doesn't it make me look like a 'real photographer'?


The Scorpio Races

Over the weekend I just finish reading The Scorpio Races, it was so good. It's a fantasy novel based loosely on the Celtic water horses and I was so disappointed when I finally finished it...just because I wished it was longer! I recommend it to anyone who likes an exciting adventure story.

It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line.
Some riders live.
Others die. -  Amazon


I haven't seen a movie that I've loved, I mean really loved in ages...but that all changed on Wednesday night. Caleb and I sat down and rented a movie from our apple TV (the american store) 50/50. This is unfortunate for  Australians because 50/50 won't be released in our cinemas until March. But trust me it's worth the wait, this movie was amazing! It made me laugh, cry and it earned every one of those 93 rotten tomatoes. Instead of telling you more I thought I'd share the trailer with you...which doesn't even get close to how good this film is.



Kristine & Nathan

Kristine and Nathan's day was officially the most emotional wedding of 2011. It started off with stress, the zippers in the bridesmaid's dresses broke two hours before the this meant they spent their morning with the seamstress and met Kristine at the ceremony. Then there were tears, so many tears...Kristine's family are criers. But I'm pretty sure Tuli and I shed a few ourselves during the ceremony and speeches. Then there was laughter! I've never been to a wedding where the bride and groom had to compete in challenges against one another (Kristine won), along with the audience taking bets on how long the best man's speech would take...hilarious.

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Urban Weeds

My new favourite blog is Urban's a simple concept - show amazing street style from Portland. I love how photographer Lisa Warninger finds these interesting people and shares a little bit of their style story. Lisa's photography is perfect, she shows so much of each subject in the space of two frames. Make sure you check out this beautiful blog...but be prepared to feel like a crap dresser, these Portland kids have style!

Portlandia - Dream of the 90's

I'm so excited. Portlandia season two has begun and it's just as good as the first season! Some of you may remember Put a bird on it which I've shared with you on the blog before, well today I'm going to share another Portlandia favourite with you - Dream of the 90's. This is also from the first season, I remember the first time I watched this thinking to myself "this is truly the best thing ever".

J.Crew I love you!

So as you might have guessed I get to see heaps of wedding dresses. Obviously they are all beautiful, but I myself tend to be a more partial towards simple gowns than the 'blingy' ones. So when I found J.Crew's wedding dresses I fell I love! Simple, fun and not too expensive...could you ask for anything more? Below are some of my favourites, keep in mind I'm already married and will never get the chance to wear any of unmarried readers you must wear them for me!

Dune Gown.

Emma Gown.

Principessa Gown.

Janine & Alan

Alan and Janine got married in Wee Jasper and it was one of the most beautiful locations for a wedding I have ever seen! The couple got married down by the river and then their reception was at a beautiful old homestead. Only having 40 guests really made the day very personal, it was a real joy to be a part of Alan and Janine's lovely wedding.

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Dear Photograph

Have you seen the beautiful website Dear Photograph? If you haven't make sure you check it out...below I've put up a couple samples of what you'll find there.

Dear Photograph, This little girl is all grown up, and grandma is gone, but her garden still grows…


Dear Photograph, I remember when my Dad taught my niece how to ride her bike. Today she stands tall and this photo is what I now hold close to me. Dad passed away, suddenly, eight weeks ago and Christmas and New Year’s Eve just didn’t shine the same without him here.

Miss you, Yvonne

Dear Photograph, If only I could hop on my bike and pedal around town with my mom just for the day. That adventure would be priceless!



In or Out?

So were you popular or unpopular in school? I wasn't particularly good looking (my skin was out of control) or cool, but I was one of those people who was friends with everyone. As I grew older going from high school, to college and finally University I noticed that the lines started to blur between social groups. There was no longer 'cool kids' and 'uncool kids', people were just people. Like we were told by our parents "it doesn't matter how popular you were in school, once you leave no one cares". Parents you were correct, but what you neglected to tell us was the 'in-crowd' rules still apply as an adult...only now it's a new group of cool kids.

I must have been hiding under a rock for the last few years, but until 2011 I had no idea these groups existed. I was just taking photographs, trying to build up my business and not really paying attention to the photographic industry. But once I met a few people it was made very clear to me that I should not have been ignoring my peers in the industry. So I began attending a few social gatherings, following photographers on twitter and meeting people for coffee. Very quickly I realised there was a whole photographic world out there that I had no idea existed....a world where high school rules still applied.

I learned that there are still the cool kids, but these people are no longer chosen to be popular because of  good looks (though this doesn't hurt) or athletic prowess. Instead by how successful their business is or appears to be, or even more importantly which photographers call them friend (keep in mind this may only be on Facebook). Unfortunately along with popularity comes the wannabes, the photographers who put more energy into becoming cool than into their businesses.  Lastly there is the out crowd. These people aren't noticed by the 'photo cool kids' for a couple of different reasons. Firstly because they are more than likely not successful enough yet and secondly because they are more focused on making their clients happy rather than other photographers. I'm pretty sure most industries have these issues, because it's human nature to want people to like you.

To sum up I think having a good support system of other photographers around you is important. But make sure you put your energy into your clients liking you, what good is having 1000 photographers 'like' your Facebook page when you're only booking 3 shoots a year? Instead of commenting on every blog post and trying to push your way into every  Twitter conversation, write your own blog posts and tweet people who care about you. You don't have to kiss up to photographers who don't know who you're worth way more than that.

A peek into next week.


I thought I would share something fun with you today...Crochetdermy! These wonderful pieces were done by Shauna Richardson and I think they are amazing.

Genevieve & James

I loved Genevieve and James' wedding! It was so simple, yet it was missing nothing.

There were no bridesmaids, groomsmen, bouquets, white dress or anything really traditionally 'weddingish'. Instead there was an incredible apricot dress, a younger brother's punk band and lots of family and friends. This was a truly balanced wedding where relationships came first and details were almost non-existent.

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Instagram - The Last Few Months

I haven't shared an Instagram post for a while so this one is big! I love the whole Instagram world, I guess it's because I'm much better at expressing myself through images rather than words. I also love the challenge of taking good photos with my phone, I hope you enjoy.


I've been watching Felicity again and as the intro began for the first time I thought to myself 'this is where my love of photography truly began'. Have you ever seen it before? The intro is made up of beautiful black and white images of the characters around New York. I remember being in high school seeing those images, watching the show and being inspired to pick up an SLR for the first time. Felicity without me knowing it helped start my career path.

The rest of the show is just as beautiful as the intro. Every scene has amazing light and I can't stop watching it!


Rob & Liz

I'm so excited to share this with you today! It isn't a wedding or an engagement shoot, it's what I like to call a 'just because' shoot. Why? Well you could be having portraits for so many reasons 'just because we love each other', 'just because our parents want nice photos of us' or even 'just because we want to hang out with Amanda'. People go and get bad photos taken at the mall for no real reason, instead why not get good portraits?

One of the main reasons Rob and Liz wanted to get photos taken together (besides loving each other) was because every time they went to Sydney, Rob's parents would insist on taking a photo of the couple. These photos were usually taken of Rob and Liz when they leaving for Canberra, not looking their best and on occasion hungover. The next time the couple would return to visit the family what would be sitting on the mantel? You guessed it a lovely enlargement of hungover Rob and Liz. So if all goes to plan Rob's parents will replace the many 'hungover' shots of Rob and Liz with these new ones we took last week.

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The Workshop Epidemic

I want to start by saying...I love workshops! So this isn't a negative rant post, rather a post highlighting something I'm just a little bit concerned about.

If you're a photographer and haven't noticed the huge rise in photography workshops over the last couple of years you must be living under a rock. They're popping up everywhere! It's almost expected that if you are a successful photographer, you offer a workshop. And I think this is wonderful, workshops are a great way to learn and network. But there are a couple of things about the new 'workshop culture' that makes me nervous.

1. Addiction - You may think that I'm silly saying people can get addicted to workshops, but if people have to go to absolutely every workshop offered in a year (even if they cover the same subjects) I think they may have an issue. I've even heard of photographers paying for workshops and not paying for the basic needs of their advertising! Then they wonder why no one is booking them and all their 'workshop mates' have so many weddings coming up (note: your 'workshop mates' advertised).

2. Inconstancy - One of the problems I've seen coming out of attending so many workshops is business inconstancy. What I mean is that people are constantly changing their minds about their direction because they are like "well __________ is successful and they do this so I should do it too", then they change their business' direction until the next workshop they attend.

3. Independent thought - Lastly people seem to stop being able to come up with their own ideas. They attend workshops for inspiration, direction and advice...and sometimes in this they seem to lose themselves.

So here are my final thoughts....the people running the workshops aren't doing anything wrong. They are providing a wonderful service and wealth of knowledge to up and coming photographers. So new photographers learn to trust yourself! You have just as many wonderful and creative ideas as the people leading the workshops, don't sell yourself short and copy them. Be yourself. What do you love? What are you ideas? Run with these things, use the tools that workshops have given you. But remember that's all they are, tools and not 'if you do these things you will be successful' rules.

I can't  have a post without a photo! This is just a sneak peak of what I'll be sharing with you on Monday.

Tracey & Joel

I have very little in common with Tracey & Joel. They have lots of pets, I have no pets. They paint their house in bright colours, I'm very boring and am going through a white stage. They are good at gardening and I'm very, very bad at get the idea. But the one thing we do have in common is our love of creative photography!

It was wonderful having Tracey & Joel's input into their photos and that they were just as excited as I was about the images. I really couldn't have asked for an easier or more fun couple...we had a blast. Their wedding was held in the 'forest' at Weston Park, it was a beautiful ceremony and I love how Tracey and Joel really injected themselves into every aspect of the day. We can all learn from yourselves people!

Thanks to Tuli for being my second on the day.

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My So Called Life

I've finally started watching 'My So Called Life' with Claire Danes and Jared Leto. It's been on my list for a while and so far I'm enjoying it. I think the thing I like most about the show is it's 'look', everything is a little dark, washed out and moody....even during the day. As usual it's the light that hooks me in.

A Rainy Wedding

Rain on a wedding day by most is seen to be a bad thing, trying to keep a giant white dress white is hard enough without adding water and mud into the equation. But personally I don't really mind the rain because sometimes it brings about some magical images.

You may remember a couple of weeks ago I blogged about giving my shoes to a bride and getting wet feet. Well at the time I'm pretty sure the wonderful Bronwyn & Ben thought I was a little crazy making them walk through muddy puddles, but now seeing this image hopefully it will all make sense. Thanks for being such good sports guys and going along with my eccentric behaviour!