I am so excited to be a part of KariAnne Wood’s book launch, So Close to Amazing on September 5th. KariAnne’s debut memoir shares the stories behind her crazy popular blog, Thistlewood Farms. I met KariAnne at the Haven Conference in July. It was like sitting inches away from a real-life celebrity. She had the personality to match her hair and a contagious smile in any size group.
We need more KariAnne’s in the world.
MySo Close to Amazing Story
I first met (spoke) with KariAnne over the phone last August. It was a consult about the direction of my blog. Her energy grabs you over the phone and by the time I hung up I was a little overwhelmed and hyped up at the same time. She convinced me I could do any of my goals. I just needed to start with one. One of the goals for my blog was to improve my photographs.
KariAnne suggested lenses and “f-stop” settings. At the time I had no clue what she was talking about. I just answered with a series of “a huh/s” on my end of the conversation.
I decided photography was my biggest challenge. And, a successful blog or social media platform is all about the image; staged, captured or edited it’s all about the feelings we attach to the image.
I guess I have strong feelings for lemons and limes.
My so close to amazing story was more like so far from amazing.
Kind of like my tag line, more trailer than trophy.
I took 989 photos on my Nikon after my conversation with KariAnne. I had note cards parsed together from Google searches. And, with the energy from the most recent Haven Conference, I signed up for a photography class for the first Wednesday in August.
I had my camera discreetly tucked into my bag (my handbag, not a camera bag). It turned out everyone in this class was there because the two-hour course was free with the purchase of a new camera. I leaned over my chair, being careful not to spill my Starbucks, and I zipped my handbag tight.
No need to share my vintage camera to this crowd.
I listened to the instructor and impatiently thought, “Just get to the manual mode settings.”
M is for Manual Mode
The instructor eventually reviewed f-stop, aperture and the relationship between the two settings. Oh, and ISO and other functions. I made a note that M is for manual mode and it’s the mode where the photographer takes control of the settings. I knew “M” was for Manual because the “M” was on my camera. Duh.
My notes had arrows, equal signs, and less < and more > symbols, and looked more like the notes I doodled in my high school Physics class.
And, then he went through the other letters on my camera, “A,” “S,” and “P.” I think at that moment, I tilted my head in response to my mind putting the breaks on my thoughts.
In that moment, I realized I had taken 989 photos using all the letters on my dial, at the same time for one photo.
Yep, every single photo since January, I started on the “M,” turned the dial to the “A”, followed by the “S” for shutter speed. I never knew what the “P” represented, so I skipped it. Each turn of the dial erased my previous setting. I thought I had to adjust all three modes with the click of that dial as long as I started with the “M.”
It turns out, if I commit to the “M” I don’t need the other letters.The M is where real photographers hang.
this was #soclosetoamazing moment
I didn’t touch my camera for days. But on a casual Saturday, with the family out and about, I grabbed my camera with a new attitude and resolve. But first, I deleted all 989 photos. It was a clean start and memory card. August just got me so (much) closer to amazing.
M is for me and my time
A is for an amazing attitude
S is for soo……….
P is for perspective….
Solving a problem means looking at it from a different view or mindset. Sometimes I get sideways in my thoughts (sidenote: that is my new favorite expression), and I need a new perspective.
So Close to Amazing
KariAnne’s book, So Close to Amazing, includes stories of encouragement and the constant reminder to not take oneself too seriously. It’s in the voice of a woman who could be your neighbor, friend or colleague.
The messages in her book inspired me to start my photography journey all over with a bag of lemons and limes. It’s about capturing and celebrating the little lime in the middle of the crowd or the noise. Or the lemon that can’t quite sit still, prefers to be sideways or upside down and #soclosetoamazing … but not too close.