Sometimes you must put the lens down….

This summer started with a long adventurous vacation that took me by car from Austin to Michigan to Chicago to plane to San Jose, CA train ride to San Francisco with a bus trip to the Golden Gate Bridge back to train to the airport (San Fran in 8 hours on layover) to plane across the country to Charlotte, SC and finally to Costa Rica.  We backpacked throughout Costa Rica for 3 weeks with the number of buses and cabs somewhere past a dozen.

While in Costa Rica I carried a 60-ish pound backpack and a small sling camera bag in the front.  Funny….as much as I love photography I loathed that camera bag! I could not put it on my shoulder because of the hefty load that already occupied my 5’6″ frame, so I clipped it to my hip belt and let it pound against my right leg & knee. Around week 2 I realized I had barely looked at my large DLSR camera, or the 3 lens I brought, let alone snapped any photos with it.  Most days I left it laying weightlessly on our bed in our hotel room, relieved it was not a burden on our adventures climbing over rocks on the ocean’s edge or bumbling through the jungle through mud to 3 tiered waterfalls.

I love my camera. I love it for the things I can do with it, for the things I can create with it, and for the endless amount of memories captured for so many people.  But I had to renew my love with it after it’s presence throughout our trip. I know I should have captured so much more of Costa Rica’s beauty through my lens but this vacation was my first “real” vacation in 3 years. (besides visiting family) I had just finished around 41 shoots from March-June and I was ready to be in complete abandon and zen.

Why is probably the word you are grasping for now.  Why am I telling you all this when I am a photographer and I obviously want your business and I LOVE taking photos?  I say it because if there is one thing I absorbed from going on our excursion, while I was there and when we returned. People are becoming so obsessed with documenting everything through their phones, social media, and are shriveling into themselves. Losing empathy, attention to small joys all around us, lacking communication with each other, and most importantly just being present in a single moment with real live humans!  I know, I know I rant but take one moment after reading this and close your screen or put down the phone/tablet and  go ask someone how their day was with 100% of your attention. Play fetch with your dog, or a board game with your family. Then when you come back….you can book a session with me for portraits in your new found joy and zen with your loved ones 😉

xoxo Kelly

Austin Portrait Photographer


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