When it comes to my newborn photography it's actually very scary to enter competitions, to show your work to the world and to be judged by the industry experts is really hard. This year I have decided that this process would be good to get feedback on my work, to see how I compare with others in my field, and of course strive to be a better newborn photographer.
So I decided to join the Guild of Photographers www.photoguild.co.uk. The Guild is a national organisation who state ‘The Guild brings together individuals interested in the craft of photography, whether for profit or pleasure’. They offer mentoring, training and have a lively Facebook group page full of the UK's most talented and lovely photographers. I'm not in it just for the awards, but for the support too. The life of a newborn photographer can be a lonely business sometimes and to know that there is a network of people you have the same passion as you have is marvellous.
I was surprised and overwhelmed yesterday when I found that my first competition entry into The Guild had resulted in '9 Bars' last month ~ 3 Silver and 6 Bronze awards. You can view The Guild of Photographers Gold and Silver Bar winners for February here on their Facebook page.
Silver Bars are so difficult to achieve, but it’s something else to feel like I have reached the next level in my photography. Even though I submitted my personal favourites I didn't even expect to achieve one bronze let alone 9 awards scored by a panel of photography expert judges!
So what benefit do I get from entering competitions? It takes time, effort and there is a cost involved too, however I know as the year goes on, if I act on the constructive feedback I receive, look at the technical aspects of my work and try even harder every month, I know my lovely clients are not impressed with awards and letters after my name, they just want me to be the fab photographer that captures their newborns first few weeks of life, but for my personal development it is invaluable. It also means that these new skills that I learn from the feedback will of course benefit my clients.
I must send many thanks to little Elizabeth, Sienna, Jacob, Jenson and of course my own handsome boy Blake for helping me achieve these awards.
Here are my Guild of Photographer 'Silver & Bronze Bars' for February.