November 2, 2013

Are You Willing To Pay The Price For Your Dream?

What is your dream?  Do you dream of being a great musician, a great leader or a great photographer to name a few?  Ever since I was little I always had dreams.  We then go through life being told you can't do that, or you don't have the money to do that and so on and we lose sight of our dreams.  Many times to achieve our dreams we have to be willing to pay the price for it.

As John Maxwell states in his book, "Put Your Dreams to the Test" the dream is free, but the journey isn't.  We get to some point in our dream where we need to be the buyer of our dream.  What is the price we are willing to pay to make our dreams come true?  My dream has always been to be a great photographer.  Night after night I would research how to use my camera, understand composition and lighting and watch what other photographers were doing.  I would imagine me producing such beautiful images that they could be a piece of art and maybe even one day be hanging in a gallery.  What was the price I had to pay to get there?  Time and money.

I had to be willing to give up my free time to continue to learn and grow in my photography journey.  I had to invest more money to buy good lighting equipment if I wanted to produce beautiful portraits without using natural light.  I already had an awesome camera and lenses and just needed to add a few more things to my toolbox.  My issue was more about time.  I am always the person doing many different things and thrive on this, but at times I get overwhelmed and know that I need to take a break.  So I had to be willing to let other things go to continue investing in my time relating to photography.

I can see a huge difference in the quality of work that I produce and I know it is because of the time invested in growing and developing my craft.  So what is your dream?  What are you willing to pay to achieve this dream?

So here is an example of how investing in my dream has paid off.  This is a before picture from 2009 in TN of the Smoky Mountains.  Nice photo, but a little flat, boring and just really doesn't do anything for me.


This next photo is from TN, again in the Smoky Mountains in 2012, but you can really see the difference from photo 1 to photo 2.  Photo 2 the colors are amazing, you can see the depth of the mountains much better and overall it is a much more appealing photo to me.  I actually had this blown up on canvas and have it hanging in my office.  One of my favorite locations to visit!

 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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October 6, 2013

You Know You Are a Photographer When....

My fellow photographers can relate to this post.  I often find myself daydreaming and as a photographer it always goes back to my art.  I thought it would be cute to develop a top ten list of, "You Know You Are A Photographer When..." so here it is:

You Know You Are A Photographer When:
1.  You find yourself in thrift stores and garage sales looking for props.
2.  You are driving and always noticing the beautiful spots you pass for a future shoot.
3.  You're constantly thinking of different ideas to build your business.
4.  You're at a party and see how the light is hitting someone and think, "great photo opportunity."
5.  Your grandkids and children start to run away when you come with the camera.
6.  Your Christmas list always contains something photography related.
7.  A photo is a piece of art.
8.  Everyone in the family comes to you for photos.
9.  You go no where without your camera!
10.  Your heart sings every time you capture that perfect shot.


 
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September 3, 2013

Hola!

I wish I had a garden this year, I miss my homegrown veggies.  Over the weekend a dear friend brought me a bag of tomatoes from their garden.  I was so excited because I've been wanting to make homemade salsa, especially with all the Pinterest photos of salsa. 

Well, today I pulled out the old blender and made my salsa.  We like the consistency like El Charro's so I wanted it more on the puree side.  I'll be trying tomorrow so that the spices can mix and do their magic overnight.

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August 17, 2013

Sweet as Honey

This morning as I was sitting on my patio and enjoying the sunshine I kept watching this little guy fly from flower to flower.  I just love the detail in bumble bee's and had to grab my camera to capture this shot.  Love it!

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May 17, 2013

I'm Back!

Hi folks,
Yes it's been a few months since I posted to my blog.  Had to take a much needed break and am finally back in the swing of things, hope you didn't miss me too much!  Life sometimes has a way of getting so busy that we just need that little siesta to get refreshed.  Art is my passion as you all know and I'm anxious to start creating some beautiful work.  One of my plans has always been to create a piece of canvas art from one of my photographs for above my fireplace.  So that will be my mission this summer to capture that WOW image that suits my style.

How about you, what is your style when selecting a piece of art over your fireplace or anywhere in your home?  Do you like flowers, animals, people or just about anything?  I'd love to hear your comments.

If I had a cottage this would definitely be one of my choices!

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March 6, 2013

It's a Bird, It's a Plane, No....It's a Falcon

This little friend has been hanging out in our backyard for a few months now.  Today he was joyfully enjoying his dinner atop our birdhouse.  So I grabbed that 500mm lens and started snapping away before he flew away. So this isn't the sharpest photo, but at least I captured the shot while he was eating.

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February 23, 2013

My Mentor John Maxwell

As of February 21, 2013 I am officially a Certified John Maxwell Coach, Speaker and Trainer!  For those of you that don't know who John C. Maxwell is, he is a great Leader, teacher and author.  I have read many of his books and studied his teaching for many years.  Last year I enrolled in his certification program and attended the certification just this week in Orlando, Florida.  I spent three days with him and his team and I can honestly say it was a life changing event for me.  He is a humble, servant leader who puts God first in all that he does and I am blessed to be certified by him.  The opportunities are endless and as John says, "Don't shortcut your strengths."  So my plan is to continue to invest in developing my strengths to 150%!

Me and John Maxwell celebrating his birthday!
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February 5, 2013

Invest in Yourself

Twelve more days and I depart for my John C. Maxwell Certification in sunny Florida!  Can you hear the excitement in my voice?  I am anticipating the wonderful networking opportunities that will be abundant, the photo op with John himself and yes a book signing to go along with the wonderful training I will be getting.

So it will be official, I will be a Certified John Maxwell Coach, Speaker and Trainer as of Feb21st.  I already purchased a new notebook to take LOTS of notes from John's leadership experiences.  As Les Brown stated today on a conference call, "We are never to old to learn and never to young to teach."  So follow your dreams and continue to invest in yourself to develop that untapped potential.

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February 3, 2013

Birthday Blessings

Today is my mother's birthday and we celebrated by taking her to Olive Garden.  I am truly blessed to have such a strong, loving and kind woman as my mother.  She is one of a kind and I love her dearly.  We talk at least once a week if not more and never end a conversation without saying I love you. 

So thank you mom for being you.

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January 8, 2013

New Year...New Project(s)

Since it is the start of a new year I have decided to finally jump in and do a 365 day photo project.  So what does this mean you say?  I need to take one photo everyday for one full year.  The goal is to expand my creativity and technical skills as it relates to photography.  So far, eight days in I'm still on task!

I also joined a 52 week themed project that I'll be participating in.  I know, I'm crazy but hey if I don't take the plunge now when will I, right?  I'll be posting the photos to keep you all updated and they are also on my fb page www.facebook.com/virginiagronleyphotography.com

I loved how today's photo came out!  Today is Elvis's birthday and I pulled out some of my old 45's with my xbox guitar and got a little crazy!


www.virginiagronleyphotography.com
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January 1, 2013

Happy New Year!

Today is the first day of 2013 and everyone is talking about their New Year's Resolution, so what is yours?  Mine is to focus on paying off credit card debt, I mean really "focusing" on a budget so that any disposable income can be paid towards our outstanding debt.  What a great feeling that will be when all our credit cards are paid off!

We spent our New Year's Eve with the kids playing card games, dancing with my grandson, Aidan and just enjoying family time.  Melanie has her first hangover (lol) and my poor daughter-in-law woke up with the stomach flu, no not the bottle flu!  Isn't it funny how in our 20's we want to party hard and then in our 40's it's all about staying home to avoid those party hard drivers!

Anyways, I hope you all had a blessed year and as for me I am looking forward to 2013 with an optimistic outlook on life as always!



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