If any of you know me personally, you know that I’ve been a TAD stressed. Ok, that is a lie, the words “nervous breakdown” were spoken more than once…but we knew that owning a customer service driven business while raising three little ones was going to be tough. This year has been very tough and culminated into major stress at the end of October and early November.
Before I knew November would be the craziest part of our year, I signed up for the Foundation Conference in New Orleans. We are very proud to be part of the Fearless Photographers community as well as an active member on the FW Forum. I can’t tell you what inspiration and influence this group has had on me. The constant push to be better in a positive manner is priceless. And once a year we meet.
This year’s conference was going to have some fabulous speakers and I couldn’t wait to learn from them! Because of the Unveiled show, I missed most of the first day, but got a ton of education out of the second day. The presenters are amazing photographers that all had something different to share and it was fascinating to see each of their unique views and histories. Even during meals we got together and talked shop over a po’ boy.
Since I missed the first day, I stayed an extra day after the conference to explore New Orleans. I had never been here before and wanted to just wander the streets and absorb. I am a lover of architecture and couldn’t wait to see all Nola had to offer. I also took what I learned at the conference and tried to get some lovely pictures as well.
The biggest thing I need to work on as a photographer is waiting for the moment. Not worrying about getting a shot and running off to get another, but sitting and waiting. Anticipating something is going to happen, getting the shot ready and just waiting. Patience is not a virtue of mine…and neither is making someone uncomfortable…so I usually see a moment and try to photograph it before anyone notices. This time, I got right up to events and waited and finally took a picture. I still need more practice, but throwing self awareness out the window is a good thing for photographers and hopefully I’ll get better at it.
The Garden District was lovely, full of gorgeous iron work and trees pushing their way out of the cobblestone side walks. I think one of my favorite elements was that many of the houses still had their gas light fixtures on their front porch. I saw a ton of beads hanging from trees, rode on the old streetcars, and stood in front of Nick Cage’s house for a while hoping he’d see me admiring his place thoughtfully and invite me inside for mint juleps (that didn’t happen). I walked pretty much the entire French Quarter and now can say I’ve stood at both the start and end of the Mississippi River. The cemeteries were gorgeous and probably my favorite place to wander, though seeing one mausoleum where a mother lost a child a year and then her husband the next year really made me miss my family.
One thing I couldn’t get over was how nice everyone was. The people on the street and in restaurants were sweet, smiled at you, said yes ma’am when I asked a question and were very proud of their city and loved to talk about it. I had a wonderful time and got to sleep in and eat what I wanted and not have a thought in my mind…a very good thing for a couple days! Now back to the grind stone! Here are a few images from the trip and I’ll post more on facebook in a couple days. Enjoy =)