Welcome to our special guest series, Photo Philosophy! We know how important photos are to scrapbookers, bloggers, and memory keepers of all types—and while technical know-how is important, we believe that good photography begins with what you believe about your camera and its possibilities. We've invited five incredible photographers to share their own personal photography philosophies with you this week, in hopes that you'll consider your own philosophy. More meaningful images begin with knowing what you want from your camera. Today, please welcome Erin Manning! Enjoy!
Photography is a synthesis of so many things I care about – art, technology, creative expression, and connecting with people. As a child, photography books like the Family of Man and pictures in the old family photo box mesmerized me. I didn’t have an understanding of the mechanics of a camera and wasn’t aware of basic composition, but I was drawn to the people in the photographs—their expressions, emotions, and relationships. Inspired to create my own images, as an adult I began the journey toward becoming a photographer. Along the way I’ve educated my “eye” in design, learned to “see” light in a different way, and now use my camera and equipment as tools for creating photographs that capture part of people’s lives.
I believe that authentic photographs of people aren’t posed, cajoled, or rehearsed. Your job as a photographer is to be observant of what’s happening and technically ready to capture the shot.
I believe that kids should be kids. Give them something to play with and watch the magical moments unfold.
I believe that we all like to hear a story. You can tell a visual story with your images by capturing pictures from different angles and distances. When you place these images together they create a dynamic and interesting narrative.
I believe that relationships between people are the most important things in life. Be sure to capture them in your photographs.
Erin Manning is a professional photographer, teacher and television personality living in Los Angeles, California. Television viewers know Erin best as the digital photography expert and host of DIY Network’s Telly-award-winning series The Whole Picture. She has also appeared as the techno-lifestyle guru on Enable Your Home and is author of Portrait and Candid Photography, published by Wiley. She helps people understand photography and technology by translating technical mumbo-jumbo into everyday words and by facilitating learning with a clear, friendly teaching style.
Whether in front of the camera or behind it, photography has always been a part of Erin’s life and synthesizes her experience and education in art, technology, and entertainment. She specializes in lifestyle imagery for clients such as AT&T, Bank of America, Disney, various lifestyle magazines, healthcare organizations and individuals. Erin spent several years honing her craft by working as a commercial, portrait, and stock photographer, as well as working for Getty Images, and completing a degree in Studio Art/Graphic Design from Loyola Marymount University.
Erin serves on the Board of Directors for the Digital Imaging Marketing Association and is a member of the American Photographic Artists, Women in Photography International and the Los Angeles Digital Imaging Group, whose purpose is dedicated to advancing the art and science of digital imaging.
Learn more about the light, composition, and how to work that camera of yours in Erin's online Digital Photography 101 class at ReneePearson.com beginning March 21. You’ll be taking better pictures in a snap!
Home Studio Lighting Kit. Erin partnered with FJ Westcott to develop a lighting kit that’s safe, easy to use, and affordable. It includes two stands, two daylight-balanced lights with two softboxes and an instructional DVD where Erin personally walks you through setting up the kit and shooting great pictures.
Would you like to learn how to make money with your digital photography? Check out Erin's new book, Make Money With Your Digital Photography. It hits the shelves this May.
And be sure to visit her site, Erin Manning Photography.