Okay, okay. I can hear you all saying "Really Whitney?! How about some lifestyle photographs? How about something normal? Why don't you try talking about something other than yourself and your adventures?"
I honestly don't have an answer to these questions. When I feel inspired to write, it just flows out of my brain and onto this "paper". I know talking about my work is important, but I also know that I need to inform my viewers and followers about ME as well. It's clear that sharing information about yourself creates a bond of sorts with other people. Others can easily connect and relate with you if you share!
As you all may or may not know, I quit my part time job in July to be my own boss. As a celebratory gift to myself, I booked a date to skydive with my co-workers and friends. I've been wanting to do it forever and finally built up the courage (AND made the time!) to go do it! I booked my jump date for the middle of August and it ended up getting rained out. Last Saturday, I took the day off and drove to Xenia, OH to make the jump again... My dad came from Canton, OH (to watch, not jump!) and my best friend Rory came from Kalamazoo, MI. Rory has also wanted to do this for a long time and was excited to participate. In total, my confirmed number of people going went from 13 to 3. That was totally fine with me anyways because they could only take a few people up in the air at once. After waiting around and watching the other jumpers fall from the sky for 5 hours, HUGE storm clouds rolled in and well, once again, we got rained out. We patiently rescheduled and headed back to Columbus. Sam and I rescheduled for Tuesday, September 1.
We woke up that morning eager and ready to go! We braided our hair (I've learned that when riding a motorcycle, a woman must braid her hair in order for it to be in any great condition after getting wind-blown...any other way is just going to be messy.), grabbed our coffee and made the trek to Xenia again! When we walked in, an instructor greeted us and eager asked "Are you two here to go bowling with us?!" We filled out about 6 pages of "if you die" paperwork and within minutes, unlike the time prior, we were up in a tiny plane! The pilot didn't even get off the ground and realized there was something wrong with the plane and that it wasn't safe to go up. We turned around to get another plane. At this point, I could see the fear in Sam's eyes. She was shaking. Nerves are fun!
My instructor, Jeff, was also my photographer. He took about 400 images total...from before the jump, up in the plane, our free fall, Sam jumping out of the plane first (AHH!), pulling the shoot, descending...the whole thing. That 10 minutes of my life literally feels like 1 second now. Everything went SO fast. The plane ride up was fast, watching Sam put her foot on the ledge of the plane and within milliseconds, she was gone. I wasn't much farther behind her because I felt like my foot was on the ledge for literally 1 second. I looked up at the wing of the plane, I heard Jeff say "we're ready!" and in a blink of an eye, I was free-falling at 120 mph through the clouds! My free fall felt like 40 minutes. I think my heart stopped for that whole free fall. My brain wasn't focused on anything. I wasn't thinking, I was just...existing. It is the most peaceful, amazing, breath taking experience. I was just telling someone that the easiest, most relatable experience that KIND of compares to it is seeing the Grand Canyon for the first time. There aren't even words. I'm still in awe and it happened 4 days ago!
When people say "it's addicting!"...that's not even a joke. If I had the money, I'd go once a month, but that's not an option. So, in order to get my adrenaline fix, I agreed with Sam (and hopefully Rory can join in on this too!) that we would go once a year. That gives us time to save up and also remember our last jump. People say that no jump is quite like your first...leave it to me to want to test that theory!
Know what's crazy about it all? I'll never view airplanes, parachutes, motorcycles or life the same again. Jumping from a great plane has changed a lot of views I have in regards to adrenaline and how I deal with certain situations. I am SO happy that I did it and I'd do it again tomorrow if I could! Please feel free to comment on my images or ask questions about my jump! I love talking about it!!!!
I now digress back to real life.
This morning, I woke up early and wanted to go back to bed. Instead, I watched a webinar about how posing your clients in the photography world can make or break your business. It makes sense. We've all experienced awkward silence in a shoot, clients not feeling comfortable and then the photographer not really knowing how to improve or fix the situation. As a result, the images can be altered in a negative way (especially the client!) The woman hosting the webinar gave some really great advice regarding posing and direction that I think is going to be a huge bonus for my business! I'm really excited to use the tools I learned this morning, and I'm really glad I didn't go back to bed because I wouldn't have been able to cram this blog in before my next adventure for the day...
SO! Today at Noon, I have a gender reveal session in German Village, OH with my amazing friends Christina and Justin! I have known Justin for about 17 years now. We met through a mutual friend/family member and we've been close ever since (we bonded mostly through Jamiroquai)! Justin and Christina eloped (did I ever mention I love elopements?!) in 2015 and just recently announced that they are expecting! As soon as Christina found out, she got in contact with me and booked a gender-reveal photoshoot. I, of course, eagerly agreed. It's crazy to believe it's already here! I can't wait to share their images next week on the blog!