Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Keep Getting Better - by Aaron Esser

Editor's note: In the following weeks, you will hear and see images from our students themselves: their thoughts and reflections on the course, their work, and the work of others. Come back often to see what is happening in the Lambton Digital Photography program.

Keep Getting Better  by Aaron Esser

I never thought going to school for photography would be so challenging. Who goes to school for photography, right?

I originally found out about this program through an article in the local newspaper. I had heard of Richard Beland and knew that he was quite a successful photographer. I decided to check the program out online. It seemed perfect. I already had the computer and camera I would need which would help cut down costs and it was right at home here in Sarnia. I have always wanted to be a photographer. I knew I might not work as a photographer full time after this program because I also wanted to do other things as a career, but I knew I had to do something I loved.

The first few weeks of the program seemed too easy. We were just going over the absolute basics. Some stuff seemed just like common sense. But then, there were some basic things I learned that I didn’t know at the time which turned out to be essential. Within a couple of weeks, the program suddenly became extremely difficult. As a photographer, you have to be fast on your feet, good with people, and know your technical  stuff for any situation. It’s not as easy as you think to be professional and to create professional images. Additionally, you have to be able to output many images quickly to clients. It has not been easy the last two years. With multiple projects in several classes, you have a lot to get done.

But it’s all worth it. By the time this year is up, I will have a website, several portfolios, a CV, an artist statement, a business plan, a logo and much more to get me started in my photography career.

I have heard many photographers say that you don’t need to go to school. This may be the case if you are the kind of person who has the ability to teach yourself day in and day out without anyone pushing you. But, going to school for me was a way to make sure I learn. I’m a busy guy with many other projects going on in my life, and if I didn’t go to school, some things would be left behind. School forces you to learn. It forces you to become better.

I want to show several images from my first year compared to my second year. There has been a great improvement. Photography is all about light. It’s amazing, how much more I have come to understand the importance of this from the first to the second year. My images are more consitent. It is no longer based on chance whether I get a good image or not out of a shoot. There are several creative design classes in the program. They have challenged me to make my images stand out through differing lighting, placement, and angles. Without this program, I never would have forced myself to keep getting better.

The digital photography program at Lambton is a great program. If any one is planning on becoming a professional photographer, this is where to start.

Aaron Esser

Self portrait of Aaron Esser. Image left from 1st term for self portrait assignment and image right from 4th term for online portfolio assignment. Photos by Aaron Esser

Portrait of Andrew Esser. Image left from 2nd term for image imitation assignment and image right from 4th term for online portfolio assignment.

Portrait of Elijah Wright. Image left from 2nd term for anti-bullying image assignment and image right from 4th term for online portfolio assignment.

Portrait of Meghan and Lynae Esser. Image left from 2nd term for personal potrait work and image right from 3rd term for volunteer assignment.

Portrait of Taylor Esser and friends. Image top from 1st term for background and foreground interaction assignment and image bottom from 4th term for bad light assignment. 

Image top from 2nd term for shooting food assignment and image bottom from 4th term for food for thought assignment.

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