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Monday, January 4, 2016

Ordinary Miracles Star Student {Kathleen Pahls of Pics by Kathleen Photography}


Before I get started with this amazingly, fabulously, talented, beautiful and genuinely-wonderful-on-the-inside-too lady, I want to say that there are a very few seats left for the next Manual 'n More class that is starting in 1 week! Like VERY few. So if you're still considering, don't wait too long to register. Click HERE for info. This is the class that started the journey for Kathleen! And my Composition 101 class  that starts in March is also open for registration.

The Manual 'n More class was the first class that Kathleen took from me and how we first "met" online.
In the beginning, many of my students were adoptive mamas too. We connected in that way, and I was (and still am) honored that folks would come to me to get help learning how to use their camera to it's fullest potential. Kathleen was one such person. She has 2 beautiful daughters from China, and a camera, and a discouraged feeling from a local photography class she had taken. I'll let Kathleen tell you the story...
My love for photography started when we adopted our first daughter in 2005. I wanted to take beautiful pictures of her so I bought a fancy camera, put it on auto and thought, “WOW this is awesome.” As I started following adoption blogs I realized that some of the photography was truly beautiful, and I wanted to take pictures that were just as beautiful. 
Fast forward to 2012. This is when I decided that if I really wanted to learn to take high quality photographs I would need to take a class. I signed up for a photography class at the local community college and learned quickly it wasn’t for me. I didn’t understand what was being taught. At the end of the course I was no better off than I was before the class. 
Despite my disappointment, I still had the desire and passion to learn. I then realized that one of the adoptive moms I followed through her blog taught an online class that would teach me how to use my fancy camera…in manual mode. I was skeptical about learning to use my camera over the internet, but decided to give it a try. Nancy “Manual-N-More” class by far exceeded my expectations. Her teaching style was unmatched. Throughout the course we took baby steps. Nancy was there every time I had a silly question and never made me feel like my dream wasn't possible. By the end of the class I was shooting in manual mode and loving it. 
Once I knew how to use my camera, I really wanted to learn how to polish my images like the pros so I signed up for her “Lightroom 101” class. Again, Nancy was amazing. Step by step she guided me and taught me how to make my images look amazing. I was hooked on Nancy and her classes. I then decided that I would continue with her and take both her “Composition 101” and “Enlighten Me” classes. 
I have come full circle and in two years I have taken every classes she has offered. I am now taking clients and loving every minute of my new found love and passion. My business grows with each season and I even have repeat clients. 
Nancy is always there for her students. She not only teaches you but she genuinely cares about your progress. Her classes are well thought out, well written and are broken down in to small steps that are easy to understand. 
If you are thinking about learning how to use that camera, don’t just think, DO. Know that when you complete your first class you will be hooked. Even if you don’t want to photograph on the professional level, Nancy’s classes will give you the knowledge and confidence to take the pictures you really want for your family. 
Words can’t express how thankful I am for Nancy and for all that she has taught me If not for the support, the encouragement, and the heartfelt feed back she has given me, I wouldn’t be the photographer I am today.  ~Kathleen 

Even though we live on opposite ends of the country, I've had the pleasure of meeting Kathleen in person at a photography workshop, and we're going to be seeing each other again in a few weeks and again in February too! 'Cause now we're both photography geeks and that's how we roll! As often happens with my classes, she is more than a past student. Kathleen is now my friend and my colleague. And she's always working to make her craft even better because Kathleen simply loves what she does, and you can see it in the images she captures! She likes to create beautiful images that reflect the personally of the people she photographs. And as you can see she does that very very well indeed!
Kathleen has a successful photography business, Pics by Kathleen, out of northern Virginia, Manassas to be specific, and if you are in her neck of the woods I hope you'll contact her to have her capture your family pics. You can see her website HERE and  follow Facebook page HERE. But I'm gonna warn you, she books up! So when you see her post her new available dates, jump on it!
Kathleen, I can't wait to see you in a few weeks and talk shop till the wee hours of the morning! You bring the munchies, and I'll bring the wine.

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