When I started The Urban Nest, nearly four years ago, I had just come out of an exciting but brutal 25 years in the fashion industry. Not knowing where it would lead, I was happy to go along for the ride.
At first I’d thought my blog would mainly be about craft, but that went out the window pretty quickly. It seemed gardening and growing our own food was the thing that gave me satisfaction. I loved the writing, and the cooking, and for a while I seemed to become a food blogger.
At the end of 2015 the unthinkable happened when my younger brother committed suicide. For about a year I felt like I was wading through mud. Blogging kept me afloat, but unsurprisingly my heart wasn’t really in it.
I had inherited his camera, a Canon EOS1 DX. If you know anything about cameras you’ll know this is the ultimate scary monster of professional DSLRs. It scared the pants off me, but I was determined to not let it go to waste, to honour my brother through learning how to use it, and maybe it would be my saviour.
I took a course to learn how to use the monster in manual mode. The world opened up to me again and suddenly I found myself more interested in the photography than the cooking. The penny dropped. This was it, the thing that made me feel joy, excitement, passion to learn more, do more, achieve more.
Anyone who follows me on Instagram will have noticed that my food photography has improved immeasurably over the last few months. Although I’ve practiced a lot, I haven’t achieved this on my own.
A simple Instagram ‘like’ and ‘follow’ brought me to Two Loves Studio. The unbelievably lucky discovery of exactly what I was looking for, a professional food photographer who teaches and mentors wannabes like me. I jumped in without a second thought. Rachel Korinek is approachable, motivational and realistic. She’s also generous with her support, and has an excellent podcast series called The Mindful Creative, which lifts the spirits when you’re feeling a bit lost. She’s an all round great gal.
I signed up to her personal image critique package and her help and advice was totally achievable and encouraging. She gave me real life steps to take me in the direction of my goals. I realised I want to be a food photographer. Did I say that out loud?
I am currently doing her excellent e-course Lightroom Magic. Previously I’d been shooting images directly in jpeg format, and wondering how professionals get their amazing results. I started editing RAW files in Photoshop, but it felt clumsy and I couldn’t get the control I was after. I tried Lightroom, which is specifically for photography, but I had not the faintest clue what I was doing.
The Lightroom Magic course has given me a whole new way of thinking about my photography. I’m so excited by the editing process now. When the file is in RAW format it’s not ready to be seen. It’s like putting on make-up; The structure and components are there, but you need to enhance them and prepare them to go out into the world. The camera will record what your eyes see, but not what your brain sees. This is where Lightroom gives you the control to create the emotion your brain sees in an image. It’s another layer of the creative process.
I am so happy to promote this excellent course to anyone who is interested in taking their food photography to the next level. I have learnt so much and feel it has improved my images beyond what I could have imagined.
Rachel is about to launch the next enrolment of Lightroom Magic on 4th August, and has a 24 hour VIP offer for anyone referred through her course alumni (that’s me!) That’s in two days time, so get your skates on if you want to score these extra freebies! There are also other bonus packages that come free with the course during the enrolment period. It’s an amazing course and I can say, with my hand on my heart, my images would not be anywhere near the level they are today without it. Check out the link below. What are you waiting for?
- A Single Image Critique (Value $35) – A personalised video critique of one of your images, pinpointing exactly what you need to do, highlight your areas of growth and provide actionable advice. To be used at any time throughout the course so you can get PERSONALISED feedback on your editing technique and the concepts you’re applying to your workflow.
- A chance to win 12 months FREE Adobe CC Photography Subscription. For new and existing Lightroom CC users.
This is not a sponsored post. I paid for the Lightroom Magic e-course myself, and I highly recommend it. For the purpose of transparency the link in this post is an affiliate link and I will get a commission if you book via my link. It is generous of Rachel to offer this to me, but I would have recommended it regardless as it’s such a great course.