Does This Count As My First Gig?

I was asked a couple of weeks ago if I would be open to taking pictures of baptisms at my church. Of course I said yes, not only because I say yes to most things people at church ask me to do ( I mean really, how hard are most things to do at church- donate a toy at Christmas, help pass stuff out, go to  Egypt or Japan. I was kidding about that last one :)) but also because I wanted to get the chance to photograph people who don’t know me.

Today was my first day photographing the baptisms. Well, actually, there was only one person, a little girl in second grade. See, they want you to stand on the steps in the baptistery and shoot about 3 shots- the talking, the dunking, and the “I’m now all wet”. It’s a kind of cramped space and you have to go through the ladies changing room in order to be in the right place. So, they wanted me to do it because our church photographer is a guy and he wasn’t really comfortable being in the ladies changing room, not that there are always people in there dressing but whatever. I wasn’t going to argue because I wanted to do this.

I went up a little early to see where I would be and to see what kind of light I would have there. So what kind of light did I have? The crappy kind. No windows (Hello, ladies changing room. Why would there be windows? We’re not that kind of church! tee-hee) and the baptistery had a couple spot lights but I still had to use my flash. Which brings me to my next point. I’ve been wanting an external flash and now this is my chance to say that I actually need one. They really do make your light look so much more natural.

Instead of the “big three” photos (they didn’t call them that or anything. I just made that up), I ended up taking 10 photos, two of which I threw out. One was just trying to judge the light to see if I’d really have to use the flash, and the other was just too much like one of the previous I shot. Anyway, the little girl was dressed really cute before time, so I asked if I could take her picture. You would have thought I has just told her she was under arrest because she was up against the wall stiff as a board! I engaged her before I asked and shook her hand. (They say touching your subject, like with a hand shake or pat on the shoulder is important before you start photographing people you don’t know). So, I’m cat baptismgoing to have to work on getting people to loosen up, at least kids. I’m sure she was also nervous about getting dunked under a pool of water in front of about 1,000 people, so hopefully it wasn’t all me. I did get the “big three” and a couple of others that I thought were kinda’ cute, like her with a towel over her shoulders afterward.

So, I don’t know if this counts as my first photography gig or not, but I’m glad I gave it a go and will continue to do it. No, I didn’t get paid or anything, so I’m definitely still not a pro. Well, one can dream…

And, this is NOT the little girl I photographed, though I do believe it is sound advice. Incase you can’t read it, the small print reads, “is not advised”.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. 1beautifulmess
    Oct 26, 2009 @ 15:36:38

    That’s great Char! 🙂


  2. sarah
    Oct 26, 2009 @ 17:44:32

    awesome! I am sure the family and the church will love having your skills.


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