I have been meaning to answer some frequently asked questions for oh, about a year or so. Sorry if you've been waiting and waiting for me to find the "right time". ;) If I miss something you're interested in knowing please feel free to ask in the comments and I will answer this week. Ok, here goes...
Q. What kind of equipment do I use?
A. The camera body I use is a NikonD80. I'm hoping for a D3 this year so please feel free to send your donations. ;) The lens I use is a Sigma DC f3.5-5.6 18-125 mm.
Q. What kind of lighting do you use?
A. I once heard someone say they use this giant flash called the sun and a softbox called clouds - I like that. ;) I am a natural light photographer and have practiced (practiced, practiced) to find the best times of day and locations for great lighting. I use a reflector when needed. I would like to learn to use good studio lighting (someday!) for specific projects but I find that natural light is much more... well, natural.. beautiful, soft, and warm. My next step will most likely be an external flash (SB 800) and softbox.
Q. Did you take photography courses or were you self taught?
A. I have no formal training in photography but I hesitate to say that I am self taught. I grew up with a passion for all things creative and have tried my hand in a little bit of everything. I am blessed with a natural eye for color, design, and composition but I've had to work hard at all things technical. One example would be my basic sewing, crocheting, and knitting skills. I can do a little bit of each and create my own designs, but don't ask me to read a pattern - I wouldn't have the first clue where to begin. ;) And such was the same with photography. I started becoming interested in photography as a nanny by setting up + taking photos of my charges. Even though I was working with a point and shoot I was being told that there was something there that could be developed. I joined in a few quality photography groups where I learned an incredible amount of valuable information. The feedback and tips I received and continue to receive in these groups is truly priceless. In November 2006 I received the camera I use today. I've learned (and am still learning) the technical aspects of my camera through trial and error. I've learned what works and what doesn't when it comes to post processing much of the same way but I couldn't have done any of it without the encouragement and support of my family and peers.
Q. What setting do you have your camera set to normally?
A. I can't give you specific numbers because that changes with each shot but I will say that I shoot in aperture priority with the lowest f stop possible with the current lighting conditions.
Q. Do you recommend any workshops?
A. I have not attended any photography workshops to date but this is something I really want to do this year. In April I will be attending Soulographer in Laguna Beach. Brianna Graham just announced that she'll be coming to California so when that's nailed out I'm really going to try to attend.