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For the month of April I made the decision to learn how to work a DSLR and like with all new things I was really excited! Did you know that it stands for digital single-lens reflex? Me neither, and I still don’t know what that really means…

Okay, I was too excited…

Eventually the excitement wore off, and two weeks later I found myself impatient. Big surprise. I understand that learning things take time, but that never stops me from being a grump and hating myself for the attempt anyway. There are few things that I’ve finished in life that I’ve started, but I’m hoping this blog will keep me more accountable!

It helps that I work with a bunch of creatives at Sandoval Design that use DSLRs on the daily and live with my sister, Riztoni Forgeron Photography, who always has a DSLR in arms reach, but my “Carry-a-DSLR-with-me-everywhere-I-go-this-month” project was a little naive to say the least.

1) Those cameras are heavy and I’m not a careful person lol.

2) My insecurities prevented me from whipping out a large camera and taking pictures of everyday things.

3) I forgot about the concept of electricity and failed to charge the camera numerous times.

4) I don’t do much aside from laying in my bed lol.

5) I forgot about the whole editing process after the shooting happens.

With all those previous struggles, I would say I actively tried to learn maybe 3 times this month which I admit is better than nothing. I now know how to change my IOS settings, what aperture does, how to make your pictures not come out yellow, and that the shutter speed should be more than your lens size. It’s better to have darker pictures and brighten them to keep details, the rule of thirds, how to manually focus, oh and don’t cut off people’s heads lol.

Now I just need to keep practicing! Anyway, thanks to anyone who gave me advice on how to shoot and continues to encourage me. Everyone knows I can be the most self-deprecating person haha.

Here are some shots from the month:

Amitabha Stupa and Peace Park Sedona 1
Amithaba Stupa and Peace Park in Sedona, AZ.
Amitabha Stupa Peace Park Sedona
Hey, I actually like this one.
Too grainy but Nora makes up for it!
No idea how to best edit this photo. The original is probably better haha.
Boy and his fried chicken
A boy and his fried chicken.
Easter with mama
Mama on Easter. I’m pretty sure we didn’t eat any of these cookies haha.
moleskine may
Could not figure out the focus on this for the life of me.
Sandoval Design Foosball
One thing I’m worse at than taking/editing pictures is playing foosball lol.
Sedona Candle Company
Most creative candles I’ve ever seen!
chandler arizona
Arizona skies can’t be captured. I’ve decided.
cj spiderman
I might have made this boy a narcissist.
Aaand the real reason I want to learn how to use a DSLR is so I can take a million pictures of this face.

I hope whoever is reading this is empowered to pick up a new skill! Whether it be cooking, running, or playing an instrument – it’s 2017 and you can really learn anything! Thanks for reading and feel free to criticize these pictures in the comments below. 🙂

“Life documents aims to recount my attempts at all the self help advice out there. “Drink 8 glasses of water and if you really want to get crazy then drink it with lemon” kind-of-thing. It might be mundane, but drinking water is hard lol. I assume if I can’t get myself to drink water, to you know live, then paying off my student loans or making it to the gym everyday will just be that much harder. So here I am blogging, pretty aimlessly might I add, but it’s all in the name of self-improvement. “ read my introduction here.

Posted by:Traci Ducusin

Traci Ducusin is a self-help junkie with an entrepreneurial spirit and an advocate for the “good” work. She believes that everything is a reflection of who she is and that success happens when personal and professional aspirations align. Off the clock, she focuses on self-improvement, both mental and physical, which leads to a more productive and intentional individual.

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