My Photography Website is Public! Let’s Celebrate!

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It has been a bit since I posted. I needed a break from the hustle and the pressure of social media to get some things done! And that is exactly what I did!

My husband finally finished my photography website and business cards! The cards are in and the site is up! So begins the official start of my business. I have been going for some time just on the faith of my clients to trust me to deliver, but now they have something to actually look at and a way to contact me! And they can share my cards with interested friends! I couldn’t be more excited and nervous all at the same time.

I am sure that God will open the right doors and close the wrong ones! I pray for each soul that I come in contact with.

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This sunset photo is from 2012 about 4 months after Wes and I got married. The reflection is actually from the top of the Grand Marquis I was driving at the time, but I like that if you didn’t know you may think it’s a body of water. I took this before I was using photoshop or had my current (marvelous) camera. I am so thankful that I have a great camera to work with now and have grown tremendously in my skills with photoshop considering I couldn’t even open and close it before Christmas of 2012!

I pray for my words and interactions to be the love of our Father embracing them! I want to be His vessel through my business. People sometimes think that this journey may mean success and money in the future, but that is not my intention or goal. My “success” comes through loving and ministering to those I photograph. If they leave feeling cared for then I’ve done what I set out to do. I think that with a focus on ministry instead of money my photos can touch souls in ways I may not even realize. My prayer for my business is that it brings hope to the broken-hearted, makes the insecure feel beautiful inside and out, and to bless families of all sizes. I’m passionate about being driven to do my Father’s business. That’s what’s most important. Not money, fame, or worldly success.

My website is marysharpjohnson.com so please check it out if you get an opportunity. There are still some mobile tweaks that Wesley is working on, but in time we hope to have the site fully functional on tablets, all types of phones, and computers. Most people are on the go and I’d love to make it easy to access in whatever form that works best for you guys!

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What an exciting journey this will be! I’d love to hear from any and all of you! Send me an email via the contact form on my website or just copy and paste from here. marysharpjohnson@gmail.com

What has your fall looked like? What new adventure are you on?

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Update on my etsy shop!

10399320_521608365988_7279_n            I found some new items for my etsy store! I’m so excited about all the colors and outfits that will be made with these pieces! DSC_0484_1

              Another find were these tree patterned containers that can hold stuff and be candle holders all at once! I also updated my about page, and added a temporary shop logo in addition to the banner and profile pic that already existed. Plus I updated my LinkedIn account a bit. I’d say the day has been productive!

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           Having an etsy store can be slow going, but investing your time and efforts pay off eventually. I made another sell recently and enjoyed packaging it up and sending it. It’s always such a thrill. Snail mail is magical.

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            Go take a look and be looking forward to new listings going up soon!             https://www.etsy.com/shop/MarysReliquaries

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The need to document.

As long as I can remember, I have loved taking pictures.  I can remember going on family trips to Texas and Arkansas for family reunions where I’d beg to be in charge of using the disposable camera. I would look for candid moments between my aunts and uncles. I would notice the light, and if they needed to stand in a different position to keep from having distracting shadows on their faces. I would try to find great spots to take group shots, with the perfect lighting and beautiful outside scenery to make the photo extra special. I would cut out clippings from National Geographic or random magazines my Dad would bring home from the nursing home after discarding them every few months. I just loved everything about photography. How you can capture a completely raw and sincere moment between people if you don’t make them pose. How silly kids will act for you when the realize they are being watched and the joy you can capture in a split second while they run around doing crazy stunts and poses for you. I loved waking up early and hearing the stillness of the morning. God always seemed to speak to me through nature and seeing dust particles fly in the stream of light from the morning sun seemed to capture my little brain even at a young age. I remember the anticipation of those throw away cameras. Going to camp or on an adventure with a friend and waiting for your film to come back developed and full of memories. There has always been such an excitement for me when photography is involved and I’ve always had a love for documenting life.

I have had the honor of working alongside a great friend Aimée Howell at weddings, and have picked up many tips along the way. The thing I love about her photography is that, aside from the traditional family group shot which everyone needs at a wedding, she always finds unique approach to capturing each couple at the weddings she photographs. She gets a feel for who the people are, and what they value in life. She ends up really telling a story of their love and has a plethora of beautiful images to show from their special day by the end of the night. She always goes above and beyond, usually ending in her clients feeling like they want to be one of Aimée’s best buds, because she’s so down to earth with them. She is so easy to talk to and has such a unique eye when it comes to documenting the true essence of her clients.  I feel like just getting to go along on weddings with her has helped shape me into a better person and photographer. There were weddings where I was able to be a second photographer at the receptions, and just paying attention to the light and what lens  she would need next made me learn a great deal. I’m forever grateful for my friendship with her and the time I was able to spend being her sidekick. http://aimeehowell.com/

I feel like my taste in photography really hasn’t changed too much from when I was younger. Typically I don’t like posed pictures, but I do think sometimes they are necessary.  The pictures I am usually drawn to are candid and raw. The people in the picture are completely unaware that there is a photographer snapping pics of them, but just simply living life. I also really enjoy pictures of nature, and what my surroundings look like. For instance, I usually pick up flowers or leaves and press them to do art with them, or simply because I find them beautiful. On that same note, taking a picture to document it brings me a lot of happiness. Getting to go back and see how the light hit that leaf and made it translucent makes me soooo happy. To others that might seem like a waste of time or a boring thing to photograph, but I suppose God just made me the kind of person that takes pleasure from the simple things in life.

One pet peeve I have these days with photography is people using instagram and adding eight billion filters to make  their already amateur snapshot  look “professional”. Most of the time it takes away from the quality of the image, and it really bothers me. Since getting a smart phone (Windows to be exact) I have been guilty of using my phone to take a snap shot, and usually I don’t use any kind of filter because I know the quality of the picture is already pretty low. I don’t mean to sound condescending towards those that use instagram on the reg, but I just have to be honest about  the idea of instagram filters making the picture look better.

Here are a few examples of some pictures I have taken recently.

Christin Lowery Sharp on her wedding day. Drying her hair in the window because she was running late. I’ve always enjoyed pictures with long flowing hair blowing in the wind. This one makes me especially happy because it shows how things don’t always go as planned on the wedding day, but if you just roll with it instead of letting it stress you out it can make for some unique memories.

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This image of the moonlight over the barn where Colby and Christin Sharp had their reception is so deep and rich.

Later I found out the moon did exactly what they had hoped it would do that night, and I was glad I got a picture of it for them.

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This sweet girl was just standing there drinking a Dr. Pepper, but the light is what makes me love this image. Just a hot Louisiana evening, and sweet little kid enjoying a cold DP.

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This picture is of my husband, Wesley, holding our great-nephew for the first time. His yawn was so precious and delicate.

He was so tiny and beautiful and holding him for the first time will be a cherished memory for me, always.

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This sweet girl is so photogenic it’s ridiculous. She’s my sister-in-law’s sister’s daughter,haha. It will be really incredible to watch her grow up.

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And lastly, to prove I don’t think posed pictures are the devil…here is a family photo of my brother Matt’s family. Those kids are all such dolls, and I’m proud to be their Aunt.