Courtney Yegian has spent a LOT of money for someone else to take professional photos of her two little boys… even though she had her own DSLR! In fact, she’d been into photography ever since high school, but she always shot in auto and sports modes.
But here’s the thing… this mom from Boston works full time as an anaetheologist so she didn’t have time to learn how to use her camera properly!
So after her son was born, she would pay professional photographers to take all the photos – the newborn shots, baby photos, the first birthday cake smash, you name it, she booked it. Meanwhile, her DSLR was gathering dust on a shelf and she was starting to wonder why she didn’t just take those photos herself.
“I have one of these cameras at home, why am I paying so much money for someone else to take these pictures?!”
So after she had her second son, she tried to take some newborn pictures of him. She had a vision, and she set up for it. She dusted off her camera, and started snapping. At the same time, her husband took some shots of their baby with his phone… and much to Courtney’s disappointment, they both agreed they liked the phone photos better!
“I made the same mistake lots of people make – I thought it must be the camera, it’s 10 years old. So I upgraded the camera, took pictures with that and sure enough, not that great.”
They didn’t look anything like the professional pictures she had been paying for. So she realised she really needed to get out of auto mode, and her husband (lovely guy!) bought her a photography course for Mother’s Day. But she said it was very focused on studio lighting and intense posing, and just didn’t fit with her reality.
So she tried other courses too, and online tutorials and basically all.the.things… but nothing “clicked” (pun intended!).
Until Click Love Grow.
I had a fantastic chat with Courtney today where she talked about how learning photography with us was EASY… even for a super busy, full time working mama!!
She stumbled across our free photography challenge and she had a big aha moment right away.
“In the very first lesson, I took a photo of my son I really loved and from then on I was totally hooked and wanting more and more. I was pretty much a CLG addict!”
So from there Courtney jumped immediately into the Enthusiast Course. Now I know what you’re thinking… how does a full time working mom of two little boys manage to do a course at the same time? So I asked her…
“It was so flexible, it definitely felt like someone who had kids and a busy life was running things, and knew the challenges we would face.”
Courtney is exactly right. I am a busy working mum myself with 3 kids ranging in age from 6 to 16, and I’d already been in that situation of trying to learn how to use my camera. So I knew exactly how a course needed to be structured in order to 1. be easy to follow and 2. fit in with working mum life.
So lessons are released weekly, and they only need a couple of hours including a shooting challenge – but if you fall behind, we don’t leave you behind. We’re still there supporting everyone right throughout the course until the end. And if you don’t finish by the end, it still doesn’t matter, because you’ve got lifetime access to the materials.
Courtney said she would do the lesson challenges when she was playing with her boys, so she didn’t need to try and find extra time for them. Women… the ultimate multi taskers, amiright?!
“I would play with the boys on the living room floor like always, only I’d be taking their photos for the course lessons. If I was working when a lesson was released, I could do it at any time during the week, and there’s always time given to catch up beyond that”.
Also side note… because we give you lifetime access to the course material, even if life gets in the way when the course is running live, you can come back to it at any time. And of course after graduating you join a private Grad’s group where there’s always people to ask questions of (including our instructors – yes, they hang out there too!).
So you might be wondering… what has this done for Courtney’s photos?
Well, these are her before and after photos – the after photo was taken during the last lesson of the Enthusiast Course. And of that photos specificially, Courtney said:
“I’m so happy to have the tools and skills to set up and take a beautiful picture that I really love in just a few minutes”.
Amazing transformation huh?
Well, just like all of our Grads, her skills grew and grew very fast after graduating. Courtney says they love to go to the beach as a family, and she wanted to try recreating a sunset silhouette beach photo she’d seen in this tutorial on our blog. And I think you’ll agree she nailed it!
We also love this beautiful low key image of her son, which she said she learned how to take with combined skills she took from all our courses.
“The photos I’m taking now compared to what I would have been able to take before the course are the difference between night and day”.
In fact, after the course a friend asked her to take photos of her baby’s first birthday, and she felt like she might be truly in the deep end. But she totally nailed it! This is her favourite photo she took that day… gorgeous huh?!
Speaking of taking photos for friends, I asked Courtney about the Advanced Course, which she jumped in to immediately after finishing the Enthusiast Course. She said she hesitated at first, wondered if it was too self indulgent, especially as she had already spent a lot of money on cameras and lenses.
“I thought long and hard, talked it over with my husband, and realised this is my self care. I don’t do yoga, I don’t go to the spa, I don’t get massages… this is what makes me happy.”
She said they’d also been spending a lot of money on paid photoshoots so being able to take her own photos would save some money. But more importantly, the amount of joy and sanity she gets from having this creative outlet has been priceless. And what’s more, she says being able to give back, to take photos for friends of their kids, and their birthday parties so they don’t have to then fork out for professional photos too really helps counteract any feelings of guilt for spending on herself.
So Courtney… what would you say to anyone thinking about starting their photography learning with Click Love Grow?
“If you already love photography, you’re going to love it SO much more because the Enthusiast Course will give you so much joy to have the power to capture what you’re visualising and what you really love.”
A very big thank you to Courtney for your time, your wonderful words and beautiful images! If you want to see more of her photos, you can find her over here.
If you want to learn how to take control of your camera so you can confidently take photos you LOVE, click HERE to learn more about our Enthusiast Photography Course and reserve your spot for our next round.
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