When to capture a moment...and when to sit back and enjoy it

When I was younger, I admit that I suffered from FOMO (a fear of missing out, usually related to social events).  Even though I've largely overcome this fear now that my Saturday nights at the bar are a thing of the past, a new kind of FOMO has emerged. A fear of missing the perfect shot. When I notice that the light is at just the right angle or Julian is making one of his adorable faces and I don't have my camera out, I often feel like I should be taking a photo. But truth be told, I know that photographing your life is about striking a balance.  While I'm lucky to have so many subjects all around me, if I miss one shot there'll be thousands more to capture.

I made sure to remind myself of this on our recent trip to Mexico. There were several times I purposely left my camera back in the room so that I could just enjoy the sun and sand without worrying about taking pictures. At other times, I forced myself to put my camera down even though the setting and light seemed perfect when I sensed that my not so patient two year old (and my ever patient husband) were done smiling for the camera.

Looking back at my pictures from our vacation at the Azul Fives resort, I think I was able to capture just enough of the moments to act as a great reminder of our wonderful week away.


Taking pictures at Kala House of Colour

Just before Christmas I checked out my friend's adorable pop-up shop, Kala House of Colour.  The home goods store had such beautiful products, I couldn't resist taking a couple of product shots. So much of my photography these days is of moving subjects, so my first thought was "this will be a breeze".  But I soon realized with product photography, you face another challenge. The little details matter...a lot! But before I get into that, here's a look at the simple set up I used to take the pictures: just a curved white piece of paper and natural window light.

With this first picture below, you'll see what I mean by attention to detail. In other types of photography, you can get away with tiny imperfections. Few people will notice if the picture of your adorable newborn isn't perfectly level. Not so with product photography. To help keep my camera level and to eliminate camera shake, next time I'll use a tripod.
My camera wasn't completely level, which made the candle appear tilted
In the second image, I adjusted my angle to correct the perspective
Here's another example of the little details making a big difference. At first glance, the photo below looks great, the bowl is well lit and the colour is strong. But what about the background - white is white, right? Not quite, as anyone who has picked out white paint colour knows! When taking picture of a product against a white background, you want a completely clean and bright background to let the product shine.
The background in this photo has a greyish tinge, which stands out compared to the white pages of this blog.
In this edited photo (I adjusted the White slider in my photo editing software), the background is more of a true white.
The pop-up shop has now closed, but Kala House of Colour will return this summer up north, so follow the store on Instagram or Facebook for more details. Here's a couple other photos of the store.