To all my readers with horrible lighting, I bring hope.  Hi, my name is Jenny and I am from Seattle, but I love natural light.

My absolute favorite day at ALT Summit was Saturday.  There are two down and dirty jam packed days at ALT and on Saturday you get to choose between fun design camp classes. I took three photography courses and these are the first tidbits of what I learned.

The most important thing I learned from all of the classes was that different types of photography, require different methods. So, if you thought you were ok shooting cupcakes, and tried to take a picture of your kid, and it's all wonky...well, there's a reason for that. I'm there with you.  I took classes in high school, but I don't remember anything. It takes practice, lots of practice and seeing what happens when you tweak different settings in your shots, and learning from that. It takes hints and tricks and little things professional photographer's have as second nature.  The little things you and I didn't learn at Photography school, cause we weren't there.  Like how to make the backlit background all white and glowy. Well, I will tell you.

It is this diffuser. See how it looks funny against the window? You can see the windowpanes, we don't want that.  But I never knew how to fix it. I guess my mind just couldn't see a solution. Being panicked about losing what little light we have in the NW can do that to you, I suppose. Here is another shot to show it in the background.  It was one of those things, that now makes sense, but it just didn't click until I saw it in real life.  I wish I could show you, it was literally hanging over us, leaning on the table towards us. That's how I got the top most shot.  Another hint: use a white foam core board to reflect into the shadow. Yes, a simple $2 board will reflect gorgeous light, wherever you please.

Do you see how dark it was in the room? It didn't phase HOUSE OF BRINSON in the slightest. They were excited and said it was the best kind of light. Really? I have cried many a time that I didn't have enough light.  Turns out, what I needed to use was a tripod. Seriously.

They were wonderful and set up a bunch of tripods for us to test on different shoots. We had four to pick from around the room. I just got a really great tripod for Christmas and I've been using it for DIY shots to get the images to be systematic and uniform.  Little did I know keeping the shutter open for longer time periods is the key to beautiful light. I had heard this before, but this was the first time I actually tried it out.

Another trick from HOUSE OF BRINSON? crop your images to 4"x5" for a magazine look. Such a simple step, makes a world of difference.

I've loved Susan and William of HOUSE OF BRINSON forever, and they were the nicest people in real life. *psst...I love photographers, all of my teachers on Saturday were beyond AWESOME.  Did I mention, I got to take home some of the yumminess? Like a HUGE box of the delicate pastries by LES MADELEINES and huge chunks of gourmet local cheese, SNOWY MOUNTAIN CREAMERY and BEEHIVE CHEESE. They didn't last long! Thank you so much Susan and William!! Really, we ate them that night, none were left for me to take more pictures of the next morning.

I'll be sharing more photography tips I learned at ALT, in the next week or two, so keep checking back!

All of the pictures are mine, and I didn't use Photoshop! Woohoo! The top shots were styled brilliantly by Susan Brinson.