- I describe my photography style as mother of two boys that barely sit still; I use the burst feature on my camera way too much and then just pick my favorites and delete a ton. I have a membership to ShootAlong this year and I am so excited to improve my technique I can’t even put it in words.
I’m not sure I’m normal, I mean I pull over on the side of the road (safely) to capture autumn leaves or a freshly snow covered path, so to say that photography is in my blood is an understatement. But I confess, I usually leave my camera on auto and just hope for the best. I haven’t made a point to play around, but with these weekly email creative prompts from ShootAlong, it’s very casual, easy to follow and I can see the differences in all the settings in my photographs. I usually take out my camera at my son’s sporting events or concerts, things I don’t want to miss, so I confess I’m reluctant to try and manually set my camera (I’m afraid I’ll miss something).
The Shoot Along is part photography course and part photography community. Started in 2014 by Amy Tripple and her husband it’s made for parents who want to take better pictures of their children. The ShootAlong project website includes weekly concepts, photographer interviews, creative suggestions, a membership board where you can give and receive feedback, and product discounts and trends.
The ShootAlong help section is very impressive, you can find out the answer to almost all of your questions. It’s really fantastic! You get a weekly assignment with creative prompts and ideas. There is a member board and help board where you can get feedback and support. ShootAlong is giving me a great fresh perspective. If only I had two willing subjects–ha! It’s open ended help, you can get out as much as you put in. I’m learning so much and I’m so excited for the rest of my lessons.
Each week, along with lessons are these really great interviews with different photographers. I loved reading about how they weaved photography into their busy lives, and how they all had some sort of personal, yet different goal for 2016.
This quote from their welcome email summarizes it best:
Amy and Heidi heartily welcome you to Shoot 2016. Before we embark on this adventure, take a moment to gather your thoughts and set a few goals. Shoot 2016 a personal project designed to improve technique and expand creativity. This project is guided by your interests and abilities. The purpose of Shoot 2016 is to make images that are compelling to you and to inspire others to do the same. It is not a contest. Photographers of all skill levels are equally welcome and we hope you have as much fun as we do capturing our families this year….
I love how their examples easily show you that ANYONE can create art. There are tons of great examples of children and family photography. I couldn’t be more excited. ShootAlong encourages you to follow your interests and photograph what inspires you.
This program is perfect for me. A small, easy to understand lesson each week which allows me to work at my own pace (Tuesday early morning, Saturday afternoon, whatever my schedule allows). It’s creatively inspirational. I’m invigorated each week when I get my email with new ideas. I love logging into the online sharing site to comment on other peoples pictures and post my own photos to receive feedback. I’m so excited it’s going to last all year, it’s probably the best New Year’s resolution/project I have undertaken.
ShootAlong does a fantastic job no matter what brand camera is your favorite (for example: Now let’s try using Shutter Priority mode, marked on the mode dial by an “S” (Nikon) or a “Tv” (Canon).) I highly recommend this product, especially if you’re interested in family photography. It’s amazing to follow along week by week and get inspiration for upcoming holidays and special occasions (for example, Valentine’s Day). The lessons are tailored for beginners and have challenges for more advanced photographers. Have fun, be inspired and ShootAlong!
ShootAlong offers membership for DSLR users ($79) or mobile users ($45). Both memberships are a year long and include weekly concepts, interviews, creative prompts, member board access and product discounts. The DSLR membership also includes editing videos. Even though the ShootAlong has already started you can join at any time!
Disclaimer: I was given a complimentary SHOOT 2016 DSLR membership to evaluate the product, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.