Here in East Tennessee Fall has taken on rare form.
it is SO warm and DRY. Like we need rain. BAD.
My time hop is telling me I should be complaining about the cold-
but November here has honestly been like a 3rd September.
....Which brings me to this session,
You would never guess this was taken late November.
Beautiful lighting, warm weather and a clear mid day sky.
Mixed with happy people who are in love.
Nope doesn't get better.
-If there has ever been a time to show that October is THE BEST time for pictures it's now. I took these pictures a couple of weeks back and FELL IN LOVE with that autumn sunset that only comes around 1/4th of the year.
as beautiful as the lighting looks let talk about Rachel
-Rachel is a senior from my ole stomping grounds. She is a very special in the way she speaks softly and is very kind and uplifting. These pictures just give you a small taste of her sweet spirit and beautiful smile...
Oh yeah. gotta add a little sisters love too <3
One thing that i've struggled with since day one
"Well ole Bec, hope you got a back up plan."
stay with me.
Me and my friend Bailie decided we needed a coffee date tonight. It was full of well what coffee dates are always full of, your deepest thoughts, hope and dreams. I mean it was a given right? Coffee date means AT LEAST 4 hours of thoughts and dreams you didn't even know you had. We started looking at AMAZING bloggers on instagram. (You know the people who make life better than it ever could look) And envy just ran all over me. I do not have that natural gift. BUT a sudden rush of adrenaline ran over me."MUST PROVE I'M CREATIVE" Coffee date took a weird turn real quick when I crawled across the table to find "Perfect Lighting" incorporate a color scheme but of course just make it look natural beautiful and effortless
not exactly dreamy..."This doesn't make the followers wan to be me?!" So now I get all frustrated. Full melt down was closer than it should have been. I MUST BE CREATIVE IT IS MY LEGIT JOB. My dog can't live off the income of an uncreative photographer. (There is a reason you have never heard of one.) Bailie seeing this off self crisis unfold over how my coffee pictures didn't look like art and just, well coffee, sweetly said "That's really good. Yeah i like it." Bless her. My mind began to wonder truly how can I sell people pictures when I can't even make my life look good.
BAM. It hit me
I have never been creative. I don't dress cute, really ever. Planning my wedding makes me tired even thinking about being creative, and teachers just never could read my writing. Not dogging on myself just saying that's not who I am.
What is it...
Then I started thinking about my photography in general. I just never can take landscape pictures....there has to be people. I said. There always has to be a person in my picture to make it striking or interesting or just even, art.
My mind raced to a couple hours before, I was a little early to my session at a BEAUTIFUL location. and I did something I literally never do. Tried landscape photography. The results well..
I mean..It's a beautiful place. But my heart didn't light up when I took this picture. All I see is barn. leave, fence. I don't see a story like some photographers betray in landscape. I don't see MY HEART in this photo.
Fast forward 15 minutes later, The joy that I had taking these pictures is something that followed me through out the day. That sweet smile, the way she looked at her Mommy and Daddy, the way they looked at her. Now THAT is art. That is beauty in the truest form. I see their story. A story that is natural, effortlessly beautiful. Hey. . That sounds familiar huh?
Fast forward again back to coffee date.( after try 14 to make my life look adorable and fail). I thought about the joy that comes with photography business. It's not "the color scheme, it's not perfect lighting" that inspire me daily. It's the people.
I literally take the beauty of a family and capture with a lens in the way I see them. Happy blissful. real. art.
Which brings me back to blog post one. Purpose.
It's SO EASY to get caught up in in "making life look good" But it's the soul that is a true reflection of art. It last longer than a moment and it even last longer than a picture.
It's the love I see that inspires me. it's the creativity I see in peoples life, the originality the true finger print of God I see on their life that is the heart of this beholder.
There is truly more beautiful than a sunset lit forest.
Other than the love shown in these pictures, of course
Photographer in beautiful East Tennessee
When I was 18 years old I picked up my Mom's camera, and took horrid pictures that my family members would lie and say were good. (Hey gotta start somewhere). But that was just it. No one (especially me) thought I could ever call this "My Job". "You aren't good enough. You will never be able to support yourself. EVERYONE is a photographer, what makes you special?" Multiple times a day my mind would wander to "golden hour" the crisp smell of fall and the beautiful souls that light up the camera lens. If I ever even THOUGHT about making the switch to photography as my full time job my doubt and insercurity didn't let me stray to far clouding my thoughts with well...its comfortable here. Here in school, you need a "real Job" *couple of years later at real Job* "Well..I made it through another 9-5. What a way to live man. Just waiting for quitting time. counting the moments, the hours the seconds. Don't get me wrong I didn't hate my job. but listen close MY HEART WASNT THERE. I found myself struggling no matter how hard I tried, lack of focus and lack of passion in all areas of life. I remember the very moment I needed to do something different. It was Good Friday, where we had a beautifully lit evening service and our pastor asked us a question- "What do you put infront of God, Where do you find your worth." Hmm..Becca thought to herself. Then it hit me..Work,busyness. That's where I find my control, that's where I find my pride. No one can take away the fact I EARNED this degree, I have a GOOD job, I know I am a GOOD worker. God broke me down that night. I remember crying and wondering why I had this random feeling to quit my orthodontist assisting job. I hadn't even been graduated a year.. "I Sure ain't no quitter" -Hillbilly Becca refused to think of the judgement that would come upon her from former classmates saying, "That Becca, just couldn't handle it." Or when people asked my parents what I'm doing now they would get confused looks when they said "Like most girls in America, she is a photographer." Hey I'm just telling you where my mind was going...
Good Friday, came and went. and shockingly I didn't quit my job. I'm telling you I ain't no quitter I thought no way. No one could ever think I couldn't handle something, that I wasn't happy, that I didn't have life together that my problems started and stopped with locking my keys in my car 4 times a week (truth) (Side note that actually is a big problem, do you know how hard it is to get someone to unlock your car at 12am? and it's also like 65 bucks. so yeah) Anyways!
But God does what God does when we refuse to change our life, he changes our lives for us. I very unexpectedly lost my second job in retail.(Yes I worked all the time) literally forcing me to find another job in the dental field. I left my first "Big Girl Job" less than a year there. My pride took a hit. Because I was Becca Norris, dang it. I stayed at jobs, ain't nobody got tell me I ain't loyal. It was literally one of the hardest things I had ever done. And I thank God every single day for wrecking that part of my pride.
So I started my new job, thinking about how sure this is going to give me more peace. Yeah it's all good when God wanted me to quit he meant "Go to another Job"- not "Hey maybe you should try photography since, it fills you with joy." Oh of course that's not what he meant. Becca HAD to make a paycheck. and photography wasn't going to cut it. There is no way that I Becca Norris can have my own business. No way.
See folks here is the deal I was lacking something that we all claim to have until push comes to shove and you start hanging on to dear life and every bit of control you can have on your life.
Yes, faith. Faith is fun to talk about when it's like "I Have faith in the little things. Like my car would start, that I would make it to work. I had faith in things I could control. Which leads me to ask, is that faith? or is that a false sense of security that we actually have some grasp of life? Yes Becca the second one. I was totally cool with faith and supporting myself with a guaranteed 30-35 hours a week. But when it came to a direct calling God had for me ,no thanks bro. I'll take the easy route. I mean no one really really likes their job right? I just don't work. that's all this is.
Months went by; every.single.day. I thought about photography. How there was no way I could do it. I wasn't organized enough. Seriously ask anyone. If I'm not late, locked my keys in my car, or lost it's just not Becca. Yet another thing I had going against me. Unorganized, lazy,and heck far I lost that loyal thing too. Dang it! The one thing I was good at.
Here is the point I'm trying to make. I had zero faith in myself, therefore I had zero faith in God.
A month ago I quit my job and did full time photography, Literally because I had stopped sleeping I thought about it so much. It was wrecking my life and unsettling feeling grew deeper and deeper. I fought God every way I could to not leave my job. I really did. Even when people were asking for my business I wouldn't respond because I was so drained from work. Why? Is it because I hate photography. Not in the least bit. Actually the opposite, I was SO SCARED. terrified that once I put myself out there my life was literally out on display for all to see me either do well or crash or burn. I had no more excuses If I was awful it wasn't because "I didn't have time" it literally was because well. I was awful. Hahahah! After I cried and fought and had panic attacks for nights and nights I officially did it. I gave in, and I had achieved my dream job.
But that's the thing. I DIDN'T. I fought with everything in me to be "normal" to just be safe to just blend in. Not me. God not only wrote this story but literally pushed me out into the world with a passion that is so close to my heart for the world to see. PRAISE GOD.
This is where I am going with this story. YOU HAVE A PURPOSE. It isn't a Job. You are not your job. I am not a photographer. I am here to love people. To truly and full heartily love Jesus. The absolute coolest thing I will tell you about this story is not that I have made twice the money I projected to make, or that I adore my job and the people I meet. The absolute coolest thing about my life style change is the relationship that Jesus and I have now. I trust him, He is more than an empty prayer. He is a friend & most importantly he is Lord over my life. Since I made the career switch I've been a better friend, daughter, sister, church member and God is showing me everyday that is whats important the things I just didn't have time for are the things that inspire me now. That is the coolest thing that I thought God wanted me to change jobs so I could be "happy" how simple minded. God wanted me to quit so he could use me in ways I never thought I could. To use my weakness as his strength to reach a new level of love that I never would have if i had just settled, If he had let the voices win. I wouldn't be finding things out about Jesus because I was more interested in my basic needs, my pride and my status. I almost missed it all because I was SCARED.
Please friends if you aren't bored to death and actually got this far in this post listen to me, Don't put God in a box. Don't you think that He is just Lord over the small things. Give him your life not because you are going through a hard time or because it's been what you've been told to do, but believe you were made for more. You are made for joy. You are made to show Love. You are not made to be "Normal"
Don't let fear keep you from living, living a dream, falling in love, and loving your life. All it takes is a little faith. actually it takes a lot of Faith. but now,honestly have lived it wouldn't want it any other way.
So this business, this dream is God's. I want the world to know that. That I have done nothing except try to push it away. and God still let me follow it. I have never been so thankful I get to wake up everyday and do what I love, but more importantly I have a heart full of love. When this life fades no one will care about the pictures, they will care about truth. The truth that gives hope and speaks life.