zero-to-hero-dannyhudson Zero to Hero Story from Danny Hudson

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Danny Hudson

 18th Sep 2020

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From a young age, I have always had an interest in looking at photographs and taking snaps when away on family holidays and so on but whilst I knew what I thought worked and didn’t work, I had no idea WHY.

Whilst being very time-poor, I felt that I needed a hobby that I could get my teeth into without committing to giving up hours on end at a time. I thought photography was something I could do without too much time, effort and money having to be invested into it……. how wrong was I….. on ALL accounts!?!?!

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Many hours spent online later and I found I had gear envy with just about every photographer out there and my “point and shoot” was nowhere near flexible enough to achieve the images I thought I could create. I needed STUFF! I felt I had an eye for composition and I just needed a decent DSLR to get the results I wanted – Simple!

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Obviously, this was far from the case (the phrase “all the gear and no idea” springs to mind). However, after many more hours spent on YouTube, I came across an English guy - Mike Browne - that I could understand. He used simple terminology and explained things such as shutter speed, ISO, Aperture and so on, in in a way that I could grasp. There were a lot of professional photographers whom I follow(ed) and that I subscribed to (I even did a couple of workshops with one or two at the beginning) but few gave this level of detail without getting bogged down in the technicalities of it all.

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Fast forward two years or so and I still have very little time to spend on my hobby, but I now have such a passion for photography and strive to spend as much time taking and then editing photographs as my work and family will allow.

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I enjoy a number of areas of photography and whilst I seem to migrate to street/ documentary type photography and architecture, I have experimented a bit here and there with Macro, Astro, Landscape and even a bit of portraiture (currently, my nemesis – need to watch a few more of Mikes videos on this!).

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After some persuasion from a local pro photographer, I built up the courage to enter one of my “holiday snaps” into the International Photography Awards in 2019 and was AMAZED to receive an Honourable Mention in the “Non-pro Architecture : Buildings” category. A real WOW moment for me!

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In early 2020, I signed up for Mikes “Camera’s Don’t Take Pictures” seminar (having not been able to justify the cost of a trip to Vietnam with him!) but the seminar unfortunately had to be cancelled due to the COVID-19 outbreak. However, as a really pleasant gesture, Mike arranged a few of us to meet for a more hands-on photo walk/ workshop in London instead. This day took place in September and was a fantastic day out. Mike was – as expected – great company and a relaxed tutor but also extremely patient and interested in other people’s stories/ photography journeys. He clearly has a real passion for photography and for passing on his knowledge and experience to others, helping them develop and progress their talent.

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Having tried not to bore Mike on the day with some pictures I had previously taken, he was very complimentary about a number of the images that I showed him and this in itself inspired me further and gave me a real confidence in my ability, something which I suspect we all doubt at times.

Whilst I am still not a technical photographer (I cringe to even describe myself as a photographer in any sense other than a very amateur hobbyist), I DO now understand many of the basic principles around photography and with people – including professionals like Mike - giving me the positive encouragement to show more people my images, I am looking forward to seeing how I progress in the future.

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