Shoot and Share photo contest (2016 FINALIST} | Louisa Nickel Photography

Shoot & Share photo contest - 2016 finalist badge - Louisa Nickel Photography

This last year I've grown in my art and confidence as a photographer. I am discovering that the work I love the most first starts from within me. I have a pretty active imagination, and I'm always painting pictures in my head of images that I'd like to create. One of my visions was to capture my cousin, who's a swimmer, doing the butterfly in our family's quarry. The idea of this image sat in my head for about a year, until I was asked to take his senior photos. He agreed to get in the freezing water for some swimming shots with my perspective on the surface of the water. I was so excited to finally get these images out of my head and into action. Jared was the perfect person for it, and he's so awesome to have shared his talent for the purpose of my creative vision. 

So what did I learn from that photo shoot?  I learned to follow my vision and step out of what's comfortable and safe. And speaking of being out of your comfort zone, I entered my first photo contest this year with Shoot & Share and submitted two of Jared's swimming photos from his senior session. And guess what!? They were the two images (out of the 50 I submitted) that ranked the highest in voting. Photographers' names aren't displayed during voting, so each photo is given equal opportunity to be judged on its own merit. The image of Jared doing the butterfly - the image that had been in my head for so long - made me a FINALIST in the competition. I was pumped. The second image made the top 10%. 

I was blown away by the incredible photos and talent of the thousands of photographers from around the world that submitted their work. You can see the competition winners HERE. I was also excited to hear that my friend Amy, with Amy Kate Photography, placed as a finalist with a really fun wedding photo - check it out HERE! And another friend of mine, Bari of Time Stops Photography, placed as a finalist as well with a beautiful image of her children playing in a water fall. Congratulations to everyone who bravely shared their talent and inspired me for what's yet to come this next year.

 Shoot & Share photo contest | 2016 FINALIST | Louisa Nickel Photography | Rockford, IL

Shoot & Share photo contest | 2016 FINALIST | Louisa Nickel Photography | Rockford, IL

 Shoot & Share photo contest | 2016 top 10% | Louisa Nickel Photography | Rockford, IL

Shoot & Share photo contest | 2016 top 10% | Louisa Nickel Photography | Rockford, IL

Louisa Nickel is a Rockford, IL photographer, serving the Northern Illinois and Southern Wisconsin areas. She specializes in maternity, newborn, baby, children, and family photography. 

Connect with me HERE