Home Blog Day 5 // Eyes Open Photography E-Course Giveaway!
December 23rd 2014

Day 5 // Eyes Open Photography E-Course Giveaway!

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Welcome to the final day of the “Five Days of Giveaways” party to celebrate the launch of our new online Shop and we’ve saved the best for last! Yesterday’s Growing Guide winners are: Virginia, Jillian and Victoria. Congrats to all three.

As the final part of the celebration, I’m teaming up with my good friend and phenomenal photographer Erin Little to offer three free passes to attend her upcoming Eyes Open Creative Photography E-Course that begins January 5th.

Erin Little is the creative force behind a love supreme photography and bbb, one of my favorite lifestyle blogs. Earlier this year, I chatted with Erin about her photography, the e-course and her work capturing magical moments in her life and the lives of happy couples in Maine and beyond as part of a previous giveaway. You can read that complete interview here.

I have always loved how her photographs capture everyday life in such beautiful, creative and compelling ways. Taking her course is what enabled both Chris and I to have a massive breakthrough around photography which helped us get where we are today. Her approachable style and flexible format made it easy for me to finally understand all of the photography terms that I previously found so intimidating and confusing. She was able to answer my questions and provide personalized feedback on all my practice shots. I found it to be a fantastic way to learn photography basics plus explore creative photography concepts. I recommend it everyone who attends a Floret’s on-farm workshop and anyone who is looking to up their game when it comes to taking great photos. Really, I can’t recommend this course highly enough!

Erin’s next Eyes Open e-course starts January 5th and Floret fans can receive a $20 discount on the already super affordable class by simply entering the coupon code: eyesopenfloret at the checkout. The upcoming course includes a special new section on photographing flowers and floral designs created especially with you in mind. So, if finally understanding your camera, learning to take beautiful photos or upping your photography game are going to be on your new years resolution list in the coming year, be sure to check it out.

To enter to win one of the the free registrations to the Eyes Open Creative Photography E-Course, simply leave a comment at the end of this post. In it I’d love for you to share your two biggest struggles when it comes to photography. The three lucky winners will be announced here tomorrow morning.


  1. Mariah on

    I love taking pictures, and want/need to grow as a photographer, but I am still just using the auto setting on my camera. I really want to take off the training wheels and use my camera like a grownup.

  2. Trina Coombes on

    I would love to win this course asi really struggle with getting the angle of the object i am tryi g to take, and i would love to focus on the object and bring out the natural beauty of each flower so everyone can share in its glory, to capture it’s beauty for all time.

  3. Shari Cribbs on

    Two biggest struggles: taking too many bad pictures and then not wanting to delete them! ;) It’s a sickness! lol…This class sure would solve both problems, and my husband would enjoy the extra storage space on our computer!

  4. Anna Taylor on

    I despair at not being able to convey the image I see before me, through the lens ! I find lighting and composition the most difficult. I see your beautiful images and can’t reproduce the atmosphere and tone in my own. I know its simple techniques that I am lacking in my repertoire and a structured course could transform my photos.

  5. Mary Jo on

    What a great opportunity! To echo what others have already said, I find it hard to truly capture what I’m seeing. And I’d like to understand lighting better. Thank you!

  6. aubrey on

    I struggle most with getting the camera off the auto setting and translating what’s in my head to an image I can capture!

  7. Jennifer P on

    I struggle with lighting especially in low light or cloudy conditions and creating a composition-camera angle, background, etc-that best showcases my arrangements. Your photos are always such great inspiration.

  8. Kathy on

    This class sounds like it is exactly what I am looking for! I have a beautiful garden of my own which I photograph daily. ( in season) I am totally obsessed with photographing flowers ( native and nonnative) in botanical gardens, parks, preserves, everywhere! Photographing flowers makes me happy!

  9. Kim on

    I’m a floral designer and shoot photos for the flower shop. Lighting and using manual camera settings are two areas that I need help with. Would love to win!!! Thank you!

  10. Margaret Krueger on

    Definately lighting and just being overwhelmed by the features on my camera.

  11. Maud on

    I find that when I look at the photo the shot doesn’t capture the beauty that I see. I struggle with the correct angels to capture the light correctly. This would be excellent for shots of flowers, scenery as well as my knitting. :)

  12. Kerry on

    Hi: I will see a great shot and not have my camera ready in time. Or, I just don’t get the right angle for it. Thanks for your beautiful flower shots – they bring sunshine on gloomy winter days!

  13. Heidi Nawrocki on

    This would be awesome. We’ve had our DSLR since our son was born nearly 5 years ago and I’m still intimidated by it. We live on a hill in WV with beautiful views and I’d love to get better pictures. And pictures of my kids! And chickens! Pretty much everything :-)

  14. susan costello on

    I am an elemetary art teacher by day and a gardener, flower enthusiast by the weekend. My quests in photography include capturing my little artists in action (movement) and always dramatic backgrounds and lighting outdoors.

  15. Casey on

    Hoo boy, do I need this! My photos don’t seem to capture the beauty I’m seeing. I need guidance STAT!

  16. Rhonda on

    There is so much beauty in the world around me. I would like to learn how to better capture some of those really beautiful moments with my camera. Merry Christmas!

  17. Gail on

    I have had a digital SLR for a while now but need to upgrade so am struggling with a decision on brand and what is the best camera to meet my needs as there are so many options out there and with that I would also put lens choice. I’ve had a standard and a zoom with my SLR and whilst I’m happy to play around and experiment with the zoom the standard lens always leaves me frustrated as it never seems to produce what I see in my minds eye.

  18. Melissa Jander on

    As a painter, I’d really like to get more co for table taking photos in natural light, as well as setting up and taking beautiful still life florals to paint from.

  19. Katherine Craft on

    What an amazing course. Big struggle – lighting, especially in dark venues or bright marquees and just knowing what to do with my camera. There are so many functions that I have no idea about!

  20. Ann on

    I would like to capture beautiful light and color!

  21. Malin berg on

    My biggest struggle is to get the colors as vibrant as in real life. And that my fingers are always too dirty and muddy to hold a camera :)

  22. Love on

    My biggest struggle is grainy images sometimes… They just look grainy at 100 ISO, in daylight. Some days very sharp,some days just grainy,have no clue why… :( second is sometimes blurry images with moving objects (kids)

  23. Judyt on

    My biggest challenges are all part of staging – interesting composition, a good backdrop, determining the best angle, and how to utilize whatever light is available. I photograph my cakes and desserts, which really need proper skills to photograph well.

  24. Kate on

    Great prize! Thanks for sharing your wonderful journey with us folk from all over the world. Genuinely inspiring. I struggle most with just getting out there and taking more photos, and putting them together to form a narrative. This course would help to nurture my creativity. Thanks for the chance! Merry Christmas from UK!

  25. Yelena Shumakova on

    My one big struggle is focusing on an object, but making sure that the background is still has as interesting as the object in focus as well. Another struggle that I would love to see improvement in is to narrow down on what to actually focus in and how to focus in on that with so many interesting angles from behind the camera lens.

    Thank you for the chance!

  26. Sarah on

    I struggle with getting the depth if field I want and also end up with colours that are very different from the flowers themselves. I am so excited to improve my photo skills this year and be proud of what my camera can do rather than intimidated by it!

  27. Tanya S on

    Hi! My two biggest struggles- most definitely lighting and also the creativity to take pictures more often.

  28. Kristina on

    I love taking pictures but my biggest struggle is not knowing how to properly use the settings, so I stick to auto and getting the lighting right.

  29. Alison Haberstroh on

    Biggest challenge hands down is being able to take my camera off ‘auto’ mode and having the image actually come out!! It’s always too, too bright or dark. Secondly, shooting squirmy little boys!

  30. Megan C on

    Hi there! I really struggle with choosing the right settings. I seem to always be readjusting each shot to get the correct exposure and sometimes miss it altogether because I’ve taken too long! I also struggle with shooting in indoor lighting. Thank you so much for the opportunity!

  31. Linda Martin on

    It appears that lighting is a struggle for most of us. I take lots of garden & nature photos which seem to come easier but the hardest for me is finding a backdrop for bouquets that doesn’t deter from the flowers or vase. I am getting a new camera for Christmas so this course would be fantastic, I’ll be looking up more on the course! Cheers

  32. Maxine on

    While I have more than 2 struggles (lol!) I would have to say the biggest are using light and then editing to maximize said light. Followed closely by composition!! Thanks, Erin!

  33. Brandy on

    How could I possibly pick two struggles? My first struggle would be choosing. Second I struggle with learning anything. I know very little about my camera yet I have had the pleasure of taking some spectacular photos. My wish would be to get to know my camera better, perhaps get her to focus more. See if she can shed a better light on the world I see.

  34. Maxine on

    While I have more than 2 struggles (lol!) I would have to say the biggest are using light and then editing to maximize said light. Followed closely by composition!! Thanks, Erin! ❤️

  35. Julia on

    This is absolutely wonderful! I struggle with lighting and using the aperture setting. I also would love to learn a little more about settings.

  36. Harriet on

    At times my eye sees the most incredible shot and I get so excited then look at the photo and it appears flat. The depth is just not there. Other times i can’t seem to dampen down the light or teflections. I would love to learn how to overcome these obstacles. Grateful for Erin, Floret Farms and the lessons she teaches all of us. Merry Christmas!

  37. Karen Clodfelter on

    I need to work on the background lighting and subject positioning, would love some help!

  38. MA on

    Two biggest struggles: lighting and lack of experience with post-photo production/getting disappointed with raw result, even with a decent camera.

  39. Jessie on

    I struggle with lighting and figuring out the best setting/backdrop to use with my floral designs. This would be an amazing help!!

  40. Kate on

    Two biggest struggles: changing things up after I’ve found a good backdrop, and getting around to USING the photos across social media and my website.

  41. Lia on

    Oh I almost signed up for her last course, but decided my current camera couldn’t quite cut it. This time I have one lined up to borrow. My biggest struggle is that I don’t understand apertures as fully as I think I do;) it’s so frustrating to me that I can’t produce the photo in myimd’s eye!

  42. Emily on

    Hi Erin! When documenting seasonal arrangements I find that often I can’t translate the actual color of the flowers correctly in the photograph- reds somehow unveil all their blue undertones etc- I’d love to learn how to place flowers in settings that capture their true palette. My other sticking point is how to photograph an arrangement that has both deep dark tones and pale white tones, one of the two always seems to get lost! Thanks!

  43. linda on

    Challenges with consistency! One day I may take a great picture…but how did I do it….? And capturing the wildlife in my garden…so many things to learn. Thank you so much for sharing Floret and your talents with all of us!

  44. Katie on

    My two biggest struggles with photography are lighting and feeling overwhelmed with all the options an SLR offers.

  45. Caren on

    Oh, in a longtime fan of Erin’s as well! In I’m such a rut with my iPhone right now. I adore having a “camera” that’s always with me, but I have barely used my DSLR all year. I need some inspiration to remember that I’m an artist, and I need help with lighting, depth of field, and appropriately setting up a shot of my flowers. Thanks for this giveaway!

  46. Mariana Symecko on

    Omg!!! I am a novice florist and I am in need to learn how to take good pictures for my website! My biggest struggles:
    1- how to take good pictures inside the house! I always need to keep my arrangements until daylight to get an average photo
    2- how to adjust my camera to take photos in a manual setting!
    cheers and happy holidays!! Mariana from Flowerly Studio

  47. Anne Anderson on

    This class sounds awesome! One of my biggest struggles is being intimidated of all the settings and functions cameras have to offer. I am a beginner and I just don’t know where to begin! Another struggle I have is lighting.

  48. Erin on

    I’m not a trained photographer and have very little time to figure out how to get the most out of my subjects. I am, however, a floral designer and find that photography is the only real way to capture the moment as I want to remember it. And photographs are the only documentation of what I created aside from my memory. I am ready to move ahead ; to learn something new and make the most of what I’ve got. Thank you!

  49. Kelly G. on

    My daughter is receiving a “serious” camera for the holidays. She is going to help me photograph the flower haul from our little urban flower field. I have a feeling this would be just the tool to help us capture all the beauty. Fingers crossed!!!

  50. Sarah on

    I struggle with it all! How do you, through photography, capture the whole beauty of the arrangement and the environment it’s in? Space, lighting, focal point, etc. so many elements to capture.

  51. Jewel Murphy on

    Photo issues – backgrounds just make everything look busy and messy

    Also hard to shoot greenery and some designs so they don’t just look like a big hot mess

  52. Jordan Rolett on

    We are young first-generation farmers still learning how to share our story with our community (local and online). Learning how to capture the realness of small farm life, and photographing the people who do the work (a opposed to just the veggies) are the things we struggle with.

  53. Sarah Katherine on

    I am disappointed in the way my pictures look even though I’ve had my camera for 2 years. The two biggest struggles I have are indoor lighting and overall photo composition. I would love to do this course to gain some knowledge and confidence in my photography!

  54. Jessica Hunter on

    I’m so excited about this opportunity. For Christmas I asked my husband for a 50mm lens as I want to get better at photography in 2015. I’ve just started my little flower business and I want to ensure that it’s portrayed authentically and beautifully through photography. The two things I struggle most with in photography are: lighting and staging. I especially struggle with the latter as I think it’s inportant to stage and style shots to ensure that you get the look desired however, sometimes too much of this leaves me with an emotionless, sterile capture. I want the life, love and candidness to shine through. I would love to explore this medium more if given the chance. :)

  55. Laura Grasso on

    behind the camera is my happy place! I am going through a very challenging time in my life, and I love to grab my Canon and head out to capture nature — very therapeutic! I would thoroughly enjoy taking this course and gaining some skill and technique to match my enthusiasm and passion! the two areas I could most use improvement in are lighting techniques and manual operation. here’s hoping! happy holidays, and thanks for sharing your gorgeous life with us!

  56. Sage Leafsong on

    My photography challenges are keeping the entire object in frame, I often get carried away and then later see that bits of it got cut off. Another challenge would be trying to find the best angles and lighting, also learning about time of day are best.

  57. Jan on

    I struggle with sharing what I encounter with everyone. I am working toward gaining the confidence to let my creative light shine strongly.
    I struggle with wanting to capture the moment, yet be in it and dont always think about lighting correctly.
    Thanks for sharing your creative light!

  58. Zoe McNair on

    I’m an amateur florist and have trouble both with capturing the entirety of my work, perspective and angles. I want my work to speak to people and make them feel something wonderful. Great photography can do this and I would LOVE these skills!

  59. Lesa Atteo on

    Photos are too dark, and I don’t have props or nice backgrounds.

  60. lee on

    I’ve always been inspired by Florets photos ! I’d just assumed you had a photographer on staff :)

    I’ll throw my ether hat into the ring from afar

    1. I can snap cameos of flowers but my Major problem is getting the whole picture, a plant a line of our trees.

    2. Setting up a portraiture style shot to give a good timeline of our plant in its various phases eg buds, bloom, foliage.
    good luck picking just three people!
    Happy Festive Season.

  61. Jennifer Reardon on

    If my pictures look as gorgeous as yours after taking this course, I’m ready to jump in with both feet! Your blog and posts are always beautiful and inspiring – thank you:-)

  62. Teri on

    Getting the right angle with the right background for a natural looking, inspiring “uh ah” picture and lighting are certainly my two biggest struggles. I have spent more time than I want to admit capturing an mediocre image when I really want to be designing, tending to flowers, or spending time with my family. I truly believe being able to take this class would make a huge difference in my business and life. Thanks for holding the giveaway for the chance to win the class!

  63. Michelle defillipo on

    Hi im an artist. It’s easy to get pictures of my designs (2d shot). But it’s the live shots of my everyday work and what I do from day to day that needs to be brought out and what I struggle with the get shots of. I love your posts and their simplistic Beauty. I would love to be able to capture my passion the way you do. Many blessings . xo michelle

  64. Jenn Hays on

    This might seem contradictive to what the course will offer, but I shoot with my iPhone 6… The struggle honestly isn’t the cell phone camera, it’s me! I can totally picture in my head what I want the shot to look like but my biggest problems are finding the right backdrop (not my kitchen counter) and like most others have said ‘lighting’. If I could add a third it would be where to focus in the shot and when.
    Love the blog and soooo happy you have added a shop! Thank you :)

  65. Julie on

    My biggest struggles with photography are lighting and keeping the spontaneity of the moment!

  66. Alyson Vitt on

    My two biggest struggles are not knowing my camera 100% and all the settings(mainly because I haven’t had the time to learn since I received it) and lighting!!!
    Great giveaway! Happy holidays

  67. Mia on

    I understand how the camera works, I know how to set the camera, but I still struggle with taking pictures. The biggest struggles are white balance and lighting. I would like to take ‘moody’ photos and cannot figure it out how to do it.

  68. Debbie Johnston on

    I struggle with aperture and speed. At times when photo grading outdoors with a breeze I can’t either get a focused chosen object or a purposefully moving plant/flower. I know light plays a big part but not sure which.

  69. Gabriela Salazar on

    I guess for me the question about photography is; what is it that I am trying to capture? Is it the naked essence of the flower? Or is it the artistic composition I am trying to create? Is it possible to capture both?

  70. Andrea Clemens on

    First of all, Merry Christmas to you, Erin! What a dream come true winning the photography course would be! My biggest challenge with photographing my flowers is creating an engaging, yet beautiful and simple setting for the photos. Often times, the flowers are beautiful but the back ground isn’t quite right. Also, I am challenging myself to take more photos in 2015. Sometimes I let the most beautiful arrangements go out for delivery without getting a beautiful photo of the piece. Finger crossed that I am a winner!!

  71. Laurie Parkison on

    My 2 biggest struggles with photography are lighting and not getting discouraged due to high expectations yet little experience….oh and understanding what all the buttons are for! : )

  72. Joanne on

    I can’t do justice for my wedding bouquets and market set up. All I want to do is capture a smidge f the beauty flowers portray.. Help me Capture the flow of the flowers !

  73. Becky Moore on

    Lighting and capturing with the camera what I see with my eye.

  74. ryanandsarahmoore on

    My two biggest struggles have to do with capturing that perfect light and just having the time to learn more about the art of photography! I’m getting a new camera for Christmas though, so this class would be absolutely perfect (especially since I asked for the camera upgrade to capture my garden better)!!!! I’m ready to learn!

  75. Robin Lensi on

    Understanding my camera and lighting are my biggest challenges. Thanks for sharing!

  76. Susan on

    My two biggest struggles with photography are lighting and lack of confidence.

  77. jen on

    I love how you are growing…
    you are blooming!
    What a great course, and opportunity.

    My challenges are lighting, I want it, dream it, chase it, and it is difficult to capture it at times. Another challenge is being able to capture what my eyes see realistically.

    Thanks for this opportunity!


  78. Suzi on

    I’d say understanding my equipment and how to use it fully and how to capture my vision. Thanks for sharing your lovely shots!

  79. Alli on

    Oh! This is such an exciting opportunity. In my own photographs, I struggle with capturing the “feeling” of the moment rather than just an image, and also want to work on cropping!

  80. Madison Aidukaitis on

    I would LOVE to win this! I have been dying to do a photography workshop for so long but didn’t know where to go for one! I started taking pictures last year and as my work has definitely improved since then I am still so intimated by my camera and how to work it. I would love to learn so many things, but definitely one of them would be how to take creative and interesting shots, as well as shooting raw photos. My pictures could benefit from not only a bit more creativity but taking a raw photo in general would also improve my photography immensely. Please please pick me!!!:)

  81. Charlotte Chastain on

    Hello! I would LOVE to be gifted with this wonderful information!!!

  82. Mandy on

    My biggest struggle is patience!! I am always rushing to capture the moment but if I wait two more seconds sometimes there is THE picture instead of just a nice picture! My second struggle is again lighting, seems like it’s a running theme!! I really want to capture the real moments and my toddler is a blur in all my pictures ( although that will be funny to show him later) I would love to capture him and his two brothers just as they are no matter the light situation!!

  83. Michelle Wooderson on

    My biggest issues are understanding how to shoot in manual and finding a class that teaches in a way I can understand it all. I want those stellar photos that have beautiful lighting and composition. Thank you for the opportunity to win this class.

  84. Shelli worley on

    Hi! This course sounds so great I would love to win a spot! The biggest struggles I have with photography are 1. Photo quality with my iPhone and 2. Keeping the subject matter fresh and interesting when trying to post daily updates.

  85. Melnee B. Benfield on

    Thank you for this opportunity!
    I started taking photos at age 10 (around 1963) with my first camera; my Christmas present. Thankfully, I no longer use that camera, although I wish I still had it.
    I struggle with being lazy in that I always use the auto setting on my Canon DSLR 60D. I really have no idea what it is capable of and am afraid to try. I want the best shot now and will edit a photo to pieces to make corrections.
    Also, I have never been one to enjoy portraits. I also wish I were more creative. I look at the work of many photographers and am amazed at the unique beauty they create. I do not know how to use photoshop.
    I guess I should stop spilling for now. Photography is one of my passions. I love it. I love the memories that photos create. I love seeing how our house looked 20 years ago, how my relatives looked. These images are the great memory restorers.
    Thanks again,
    Melnee Benfield

  86. Kari on

    My biggest challenge is knowing what settings to use to get the look I want. I can picture in my mind how I want a shot to look, but it never turns out like I want. I would love to learn how to translate what’s in my head, to what comes out of the camera! Another challenge for me is knowing how to compensate for less than perfect lighting.
    I have been wanting to take this class since I first heard about it and would sooo appreciate it. Happy Holidays to all at Floret!

  87. Michelle on

    My first struggle is learning how to organize tons of photos. My second is that I can never seem to get the lighting right. Always so many shadows!

  88. Brooke Turner on

    I would really love to become less dependent on the automatic setting of my camera and allow ‘her’ (haha), to live up to her full potential.

    And, as many have said, lighting is a weakness. I have so many inconsistencies when I go back and look at a group of photos. I’d love to learn the tricks needed to get it right SOOC so I don’t have to edit so much afterwards.

    I’ve been wanting to take a course for a whilr now. It would be a great inspiration and motivation for the future of my photography.

  89. Jessyloo on

    I’d say the biggest struggles would be: props that add detail but don’t take away from the focus & working photoshop!

  90. Constanca on

    What an amazing prize, thank you for this opportunity. I mostly struggle with shooting in manual mode and getting crisp, interesting pictures of my active toddler and wriggly baby. Have a wonderful Christmas! I hope 2015 is an amazing year for you. I’ve been following Floret for several years and I love this corner of the internet and have great admiration for you. Best wishes from a Portuguese family living in New Zealand!

  91. Sarah Ervin on

    Oh my, what a gift this would be.

    I think my biggest struggle is practice. I don’t set aside enough time to really get familiar with those manual setting and use them to my advantage. By the time I pick the camera up again, I have to refresh my brain and sometimes I don’t take the time to think it through.
    My second struggle would be lighting and again understanding how the manual settings help me to achieve the look I want. Especially in that low light. I love a good moody shot but it doesn’t always come through how I want it to. I think a class like this would certainly be great practice and definitely an eye opener!

  92. Nadine Sansom on

    I’ve just recently found your lovely blog and have also been in admiration of Erin’s beautiful photography for many years! I would say my biggest struggles are fully understanding the all the camera settings and making the most of the most of the low light on grey days throughout the winter here in the Uk! Thank you for this great opportunity x Nadine

  93. Lisa Thorne on

    My biggest struggle with photgraphy is confidence and time. I learn best by watching and just have not taken the time for instruction using my camera. Your fabulous images captured my attention a d led me to your blog.Your giveaway is a wonderfully generous gesture but if I don’t win I am now so inspired to take the course! Thank you for the resources for learning this art!

  94. Meg on

    I love taking photographs but I struggle with finding new/different perspectives and capturing things as they’re happening vs ‘setting the scene’. I mostly photograph my family in and around our house and the photos always look a little cluttered… Also editing is an issue but that may be another course entirely!

  95. Beth King on

    Thank you for the chance to win- this is a great opportunity! I love capturing the beauty and inspiration of life…. And I need to get beyond iPhone photos. I have a brand new Canon dlsr and have a lot to learn. First about settings other than automatic! Also I would love tips on composition and perspective… To really bring the magic out of a shot!

  96. KaCee Shepherd on

    I love photography but I could use some expertise in camera familiarity and action shots. So many of my camera’s specs are going to waste! I also believe that some of the most breath taking things are in motion and not being able to capture the pure beauty of these is disheartening.

  97. Beth King on

    What a wonderful giveaway! Thank you for the chance to win such a great opportunity! I have trouble with all of the settings on my camera that are beyond automatic- I need a lot of help! Also I would love tips on composition and perspective- that special something that makes a photo magical!

  98. Inna Olimpiyuk on

    As a floral designer I struggle with more than one thing! However, to list two of them I really struggle with lighting and understanding what is aperture and shuttering items!

  99. Ashley on

    My two biggest struggles with photography would have to be finding the time to dedicate playing around with my camera & learning all the different settings! It’s like a foreign language for me! I also have trouble with the right lighting, but I think that would be resolved if I learned the settings better!

  100. Ashley on

    I struggle with motivation, picking up the camera even when I am not feeling good or when things are ‘perfect’. I have the ‘picture perfect’ dea stuck in my head and it is hard to just capture life as it is, messy, dirty, moody, all of it. I also stuggle with stepping out of auto mode, and venturing into manual. I would love to photograph more and not hold back.

  101. Janis on

    I think my biggest struggle is making time to take the pictures before the arrangements go out the door. I need to create a space to set up the picture.

  102. Haley Tobias on

    My two biggest struggles would be the functionality of my camera and lighting. I always try to pick up on tips here and there from photography friends and am constantly learning new things that my camera can do! Even with my camera’a help though, I’m still a little shaky when it comes to selecting the right lighting and knowing how to work with the lighting I have.

  103. Katey on

    I struggle most with lighting, and how to capture developed shadows in digital (black and white photo is my first love). I also have a hard time pausing long enough to capture the moment! Zoom!

  104. Jordyn on

    My biggest struggle is definitely lighting! What to do indoors especially when there is not enough natural light coming through.

  105. Lisa Dawn MacKillop on

    My three biggest struggles are lighting, backdrops and angles. I would LOVE to win this class!

  106. Rose Martinson on

    I can’t believe that this is up for the contest!!! How generous. Your giving this season has me humbled. I have on my bucket list for 2015, photography classes, raising chickens, and becoming a State Judge for the Minnesota State Horticultural Society….
    I have never won anything, and it would be an honor to learn with such a talented artist.
    I had a home fire and lost all of my photos in 2000 and wish that they would have been archived to a safe house…., I guess I just wasn’t thinking….
    I have a hard time trying to capture the true color and dimension of dirt, or may I politically correct myself, SOIL…. I want my photo to SMELL the flowers of the exhibitors that set before me their Blue Ribbon displays.
    I am searching for a photo that TASTE the tears of the new born baby’s cry. Let alone HEAR the gut belly rolling laughter of the toddler….
    I never again will lose my photos,. I have learned a heart wrenching lesson…. I just want to make up for 30 years, and have the best photo I am capable of….. AT 54,.. I have so much to learn…… Thank you for allowing me to reflect ….. Thank you again, as I reflect on Christmas Past, as those past photos became DARK BLACK SMOKE IN THE WIND…….

  107. Caroline on

    Lighting and remembering to stop and actually take the picture are my two biggest challenges for sure! It’s always around 9:30 at night, when I finally stop to breathe and it’s pitch black out, that I remember to take a picture.

  108. Catrinel Wright on

    My biggest challenges with photography: fully understanding and making best use of my camera; approaching my subject in a different way so that the photo can make a real impact, rather than just be another so-so picture. Would love to learn more on the subject!

  109. Erin mcmullen on

    This is the course I’ve been so excited to try! I struggle with lighting in my photos, and, most of all, finding the time to take pictures! I feel like I’m always meaning to and never getting it done. Thanks for all the info and these great opportunities!

  110. Laurie Garza on

    Two weeks ago, after gifting my photographer-daughter her third camera over the years, I got to keep her hand-me down Canon dslr.
    I have done bit of experimenting with flower pics but I am fairly clueless. I need help with lighting; love the dark moody flower photographs, but have a hard time executing them skillfully. The second struggle is remembering the settings, I feel I always need a cheat-sheet nearby. I’ve wanted to take this class for several years, but have never been able to treat myself to it.
    Thank you for the opportunity.

  111. Ashley Fox on

    I struggle with getting the flowers to smile and say “cheese”. They are such divas! (*wink*) But seriously, my biggest challenges are knowing when to use the auto/manual setting (I think I need a tripod!) and how to compose a proper image for use on a website portfolio. To really capture and take in the design but also the space around it to fully embrace what has been made. Lending the image to my brand and overall “look”. I also keep loosing my lens cap, so if you have a tip on how to keep track of that…

  112. Karen on

    Lighting, composition, creating a meaningful context for subjects/backgrounds – all need work!

  113. Kate S. on

    I’ve been giving this question a lot of thought lately! Here’s where it brought em: I like to think I have a pretty good eye and an idea of what kind of shot I’m looking for, but I have difficulties translating that through the different knobs and settings on my camera. The result of this is that I use the camera as a one-size-fits-all tool rather than as a process, so it feels like all of my photos are somehow the same, and somehow lacking that magic.
    This challenge has made me less inclined to go seek out that magic with my camera—why bother if the magic will not translate? It’s kind of a disheartening thought process, so I’m seeking change and knowledge and a refreshing take on things. Thanks for the opportunity! I’ve been appreciating the certain kinds of magic your photos tend to capture.

  114. Jessica on

    I struggle with using the manual settings with any confidence and how to set up my shots so that my flower arrangements are accurately portrayed.

  115. Kathy on

    I have my own little flower photography business and would love to understand all that my new camera offers. I could do a lot more if I didn’t struggle with understanding all of the settings! I wish I could find fields of flowers as gorgeous as yours close to where I live!

  116. Jen on

    I struggle with adjusting the settings on my camera and editing afterwards. Thanks for the giveaway!

  117. Michelle on

    I have a point and shoot and I struggle with what setting to use. I’m very interested in macro photography (especially flowers!) and would like to learn more about how to create more beauty in my photos. Thanks for the giveaway, Erin!

  118. Sara B on

    My 2 biggest struggles with photography are {1} Getting the camera to capture what I’m seeing/visualizing in my head and {2} Knowing some of the basics in operating my “big” camera! I would love the chance to win this prize and be able to take better pictures of our everyday lives. Thanks for the opportunity!!

  119. Kailla on

    wow, winning this would be amazing. I struggle with high contrast blooms like pale dahlias next to deep dark cosmos. Also, getting enough light to bring out my flowers but not too much it blows them out. Cheers!

  120. Olen on

    I have bben saving up to take this class. Lighting and phot confidence are my struggles.

  121. Monica Looze on

    I have made it a SERIOUS New Year’s resolution to get better at photographing my floral work, specifically! Lighting is my biggest struggle – especially crappy indoor (read: dark churches) lighting, and understanding how to use a digital SLR. I would love to stop relying on my iPhone or other photographers’ good graces to get photos of my work!

    This would be the best start to a resolution ever!

    :) xo

  122. Wren on

    Hi Erin and all at Floret,

    I am in love with visual storytelling in all it’s forms and photography is my favorite method of expression. However, I face multiple obstacles in expressing the emotion of my story. Is it composition? Incorrect settings? Post photography editing? I believe my intentions are good, but somehow I keep missing the mark for evoking the look and feel the subject matter deserves. Please accept my name in the hat for the photo course.
    Thanks ever so much,

  123. Cathie on

    A few few years ago I did my research and saved up to buy a beautiful Nikon DSLR with big plans to take lots of incredible photos, however whenever I take it out I am still daunted by all the features that I just set it to automatic settings. Two things things I have discovered I struggle with are lighting (particually indoor lighting) and perspective (when you focus on an object and background blurs out). This would be an amazing early Christmas gift, as using my SLR is definitely on my goals list for 2015.
    Good luck everyone, Merry Christmas.x

  124. anne butera on

    Oooh, another great giveaway! Thanks so much for the opportunity.

    Seems like I’m not the only one who struggles with lighting. When the lighting is perfect, no problem, but how often is that?? My other challenge is correctly capturing colors.

    Thanks, again, and congratulations on your new venture!

  125. Cyndi on

    I struggle trying to get that sweet expression on my granddaughters face. I see it but it does not come through in the picture. Getting the lighting right when we are taking pictures of product is always a challenge too.

  126. Annette on

    What a delightful giveaway. Two things I struggle with in my photography are working with the limited light we have in the Pacific Northwest. Also often I find myself rushing the shot instead of slowing down and really taking in the scene before I capture it on film. Have a wonderful Christmas! Thank you for all the insight you share here.

  127. Heather Lins on

    I think my challenges are emotional more than technical. I feel like my photos don’t meet my standards so I am less likely to try again. And, practice is just what I need. Also, photo shoots are exhausting and time-consuming. So, I need to overcome inertia to do them more regularly. Again, with practice and I think this they become easier to do. Would love to take better pictures of my children.

  128. Mel on

    This looks great! I struggle with lighting and backgrounds.

  129. Marianne Caldwell on

    Struggle indeed! I feel I have an eye for image composition but it’s narrow. I seem to always fall back on wide angle or a styled shot and would love to break out of this little photo box. Secondly, my lack of understanding terminology limits my capacity to experiment. This course would be a business changer for I love to learn and be challenged because at my age technology and devices are like a race that I was really late to the starting line! Open my eyes, please!

  130. Emily P on

    I struggle most with how to light something and also how to capture something without it seeming to posed. Thanks for the opportunity!

  131. Kathy Dudley on

    Growing flowers and creating bouquets seem so easy compared to capturing them well in photos! I would say that my two biggest challenges are: 1. finding/creating the proper lighting so that the colors/textures are represented accurately and beautifully and 2. seeing/recognizing the best angle/placement/site to do flowers the justice they deserve. I have a good camera and lenses, but so desperately need the guidance and insight into how I can use this tool to tell a better story.

  132. Melissa Brown on

    Oh man, as with many of the above comments, I struggle with getting that perfect subtle lighting, or I fight with the overly bright light of high summer in the fields! But another thing I struggle with is getting photos of myself doing what I do…I never turn the camera on myself! I’m hoping to inspire my partner to do more photography on the farm with me, so that we have an even more rounded story to tell with our images.

  133. Elisa L on

    I take a lot of photos of veggies to promote my farm. My main issue is I feel like I’m always taking the same photo. How many ways can you capture a carrot? I’m sure a lot but all mine end up looking the same. Also, being so busy farming I usually forget to even take photos or take the time to “see” a photo opportunity.

  134. Rochelle on

    I would love to up my game with composition and using software after the fact (or perhaps taking shot that need less post processing).
    Happy holidays!

  135. Paige Patterson on

    I need to learn to slow down to see. All my photographs are out of focus because I’m moving too fast.

  136. Jackie Coldsmith on

    I struggle most with knowing my camera well and for floral photography, positioning and lighting. Thanks for this opportunity Erin!

  137. Michael Wells on

    For years I have had a great digital camera, and have taken many good photos. Mostly these were by luck, as I have always taken lots of photos in hopes that one is will be what I am looking for.

    My biggest struggle is lighting, I hope to eventually learn how to use natural lighting to my advantage. My second biggest struggle is getting consistency in images especially in color. Actual color makes a big difference in promoting beautiful specialty cut flowers.

  138. sas on

    Definitely lighting and figuring out the right aspect of the subject to focus on.

  139. Elizabeth on

    Capturing the action of my children and taking too many pictures of the same shot.
    Have wanted to take this course for over a year!

  140. dawna on

    Like so many others, light is my biggest struggle. Also, being confident enough with camera to be able to take shots quickly. Your flower photos are so gorgeous that a recommendation for this is really enticing!

  141. Sarah P on

    Ooh, where to begin?! I don’t even know enough to know why I’m not happy with inside photos, just that I am struggling! I believe light has a lot to do with it, also lack of understanding on camera settings/terminology….. Super excited for your new store and thankful you’re sharing these opportunities, Erin!

  142. Lynne on

    I struggle with lighting and post production. The course looks amazing! Thanks Erin for the possibility to participate. :)

  143. Ariana Salvo on

    This season I worked with a local flower farmer all season on her marketing. A big part of my work was spending time on her farm every week shooting the fields, the harvest, and the arrangements as they were being created, and the final arrangements before they got picked up to head out to weddings. I loved every minute of it, and learned so much. I would say my biggest challenges this season were capturing the arrangements in a way that did them justice and really brought them to life in the short window of time that I was usually working with before customers came by to pick them up, and capturing the farmers and designers in the field working in a way that really told the story of connection between people, the land and the place (again often under time pressure since they were often in a hurry to get things harvested before a storm or in preparation for a wedding). I plan to spend more time this year improving my photography skills so that I can help more farmers tell their stories using images. This would be a great way to get started! Thanks for the opportunity Erin.

  144. Pressly Williams on

    Photography is one of my biggest weaknesses in my business. I don’t have a good eye for beautiful shots and don’t do well understanding how to utilize lighting to my advantage! I am so eager to improve these skills so that I document my farm better, both for myself and for our website. Thank you so much, Floret, for all of the great advice and knowledge you so readily share – it’s been absolutely invaluable to me this year in my planning for expanding my flower operation!

  145. Caitlin on

    Thank you for this! One of my biggest photography struggles is being bold enough to take photos of people! I find that photos of people in the environment tell a much more compelling story, but I need to be braver about asking permission and not being too nervous to take a good shot!

    My other main struggle is low-light photography, and how to use a flash without the light being harsh.

  146. Linda Q on

    Lighting and choosing the right aperture opening and speed to capture the vision I have in my mind. Also with action shots by the time I figure things out with settings the moment I am trying to capture has passed! I would like to instinctively know what to do…
    I am adding this course to my wish list for Christmas for sure! Have a great holiday everyone!

  147. lee moore crawford on

    Thank you Erin for providing so many opportunities for us to draw from! I am very excited about this and hope to participate. Two things the are huge challenges now are time and light. Sometimes when the best opportunities for shooting your work arise, there is no time. Also I like to use natural light and making sure the golden moments align is not always easy. Are there ways to create natural looks when the right lighting is not available?

  148. Rebecca on

    My biggest struggle is poor lighting and finding a good spot to take pictures that doesn’t look cheap.

  149. VillageKid on

    Lighting is part of the issue I struggle with but mostly it is equipment when trying to capture the beauty around me. I am working on that!!

    Hopefully I can take advantage of the discount after the holidays, thanks for offering all these great Christmas goodies!!


  150. Maggie on

    This is great! Good photography is so crazy important for a business. It seems like it should be easy to take good photographs of flowers because they are so beautiful, but I really struggle with taking pictures of arrangements when the background is cluttered (anything interior, arrangements on tables, the farm, etc), or capturing atmosphere. I’ve never taken a good picture of a room decorated with my flowers that looks good enough to use.

  151. Leslie Anderson on

    I find not trusting my inner eye to catch the moment a real drawback at times. Also, I want the simplest camera to do the best work and cannot seem to find definitive answers on that for sure. As a pre-retiree I am looking forward to expansion of a hobby that seems to have grown over the years.

  152. Janice on

    The biggest struggles I have with photographing flowers is finding the right back drop that’s not boring but at the same time enhances the flowers and getting the correct lighting for the flowers.

  153. Christina on

    I struggle with focus. Erin’s work is amazing. I have actually taken her course before, after reading your recommendation a year or so ago. I wish I would have dove a little deeper with it during that time. One of my intentions in the new year is to focus more on my photography.

  154. Shannon on

    I have been getting more and more interested in photography because I want to capture and share special (and everyday) moments of our farm for our customers. I rely heavily on photo editing because I don’t feel confident in my picture-taking ability. I struggle with understanding when to use different settings on my camera. I also struggle with photographing bouquets that show the beauty of the whole (rather than individual flowers).

  155. Angela on

    I can sometimes take really nice shots – I just have no idea how I did it! I have figured out that early morning light in the fields is fabulous for taking pics of my flowers. I just don’t know how to recreate that at other times of day or inside.

  156. sharon weatherly on

    I just don’t know how to use my camera and the full potential that it offers. I take a lot of pictures
    just to get a few good ones. My camera has all kinds of features I just don’t understand it all.

  157. Abby Lee on

    I just have a point and shoot camera… So I guess I’m kind of limited to begin with…

  158. Ali on

    I struggle with knowing what setting to use, what lens to use etc. Then I usually get frustrated and opt to not use my camera when I should be out there capturing images.

  159. Kathy on

    Hi Erin, My focus, and light are two big things I struggle with. thanks, kathy

  160. Natalie on

    My biggest struggles are lighting indoors and having my picture capture the vision I had in my head. I would love to take this course!

  161. Kirsten on

    I’m just finishing a year long self-portraiture photography course and am looking for my next project. Jan 5th is my Birthday, and 40th at that! Here’s hoping.

    My 2 biggest challenges….probably capturing action and getting a tack sharp shot. I shoot dogs for the Humane Society and am experimenting beyond the portrait. They’re getting better, but I’m not quite there.

    I think this year I’m going to focus on Storytelling for Social Change. I coordinate a school farm and we’ve got some cool ideas we’re playing with.

  162. Jane on

    My flower shots at locations and event sites never look good, maybe a combination of framing and lighting?
    I often give up and take photos with my I pad, which the real photographers cringe at!

  163. Beth S on

    I truly love photography and capturing moments around our home and farm to share. I remember you mentioning in one of your posts on farm photography that you used to struggle with taking a ton of pictures and having none of them really capture the magic you wanted them to. This is my struggle too! I am sure it comes down to me not really knowing how to use my camera, and a course like this could really help me bridge that gap! Thank you so much for your generosity with these give aways! You guys are the best!

  164. Sophie on

    I have my rescue hens roaming in my cut flower patch. They are perpetual motion machines and it’s really hard to get a good picture of them and the garden. That and getting the colours of the flowers to shine through well when I take pictures of arrangements indoors

  165. Cathy on

    This sounds like a fabulous course. I struggle with capturing the beauty of my flowers, the pictures are ok but not as stunning as they should be given the subject matter. My other struggle is just to take the time to take more photos. It doesn’t seem to be front of mind for me and then the season is gone and I think ‘Why didn’t I get some shots of these things.’ Good luck to everyone.

  166. Tracey on

    I struggle with finding the proper background and the right angle. I would like to start building a portfolio of pictures I can use for weddings, but I just always think the flowers look so much more amazing in person!

  167. Jacqui on

    Hey there! I don’t do well with flash vs no flash and zoom – to zoom or not to zoom, that is the question.

  168. Jessica Hall on

    Wow what a super Christmas gift giveaway. I struggle with proper outdoor (and indoor) lighting to capture the magic that my eyes see in the flowers. I also have a rather difficult time with angles so that the texture and each blossom is translated I the pictures.


    I struggle with lighting in poorly lit venues while trying to capture action shots, and just really understanding the settings on my camera.

  170. Carmel on

    What a great contest!
    My biggest struggle is not falling in the habit of always doing the same thing over and over… Since I’m usually taking pictures of similar things, like bouquets and centrepieces, it’s soooo easy to start framing and shooting the picture all the time! I also struggle with framing, I need new ideas to make the pictures more dynamic and engaging. I’ve wanted to take this course ever since you first wrote about it, and this winter I would finally have the time :)

  171. Emily on

    I have been photographing the beauty that surrounds me for years. Be it the forest and fauna of the Sierras, the flowers in my garden or my line of bath & body products. The truth is… I SUCK! I’m lucky if 1 out of 25 shots is any good. I really need help!!!

  172. DIANE MILLER on


  173. Shannon Brown on

    My two biggest struggles with photography are: 1. lighting and 2. making my photographs interesting, especially when they’re product photos (usually shoes and jewelry). Thank you for this chance to win participation in this class. I’ve wanted to take it for a long time!

  174. Torrie on

    I struggle most with lighting, and the capabilities of my camera. Over the year I’ve had my camera, I don’t feel we have gotten to know each other….a huge waste of a wonderful resource!

    • Kelly Mendenhall on

      My two biggest struggles with photography are lighting and presentation when taking pictures of my flowers. Thanks so much for this giveaway! Fingers crossed!!

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