Katee Pederson

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Updates, personal work, new adventures, and behind the scenes by photographer Katee Pederson.

Why I quit.

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Last month I quietly removed my 365 photo-a-day gallery from my blog.  Originally, my goal was to take a quality photograph every day in 2017, resulting in a yearlong collection showcasing my growth as I challenged myself to get out and shoot each day.  Though I only missed 2 days over the 240 days that I worked on this project, I found that as time went on it failed to serve the purpose that it held when I began.  In fact, the only reason I hadn’t stopped earlier was for the sole ability to say “I did it” on December 31st.  But the truth was, I hadn’t done it.   

 Katee Pederson is a Saskatoon based photographer specializing in commercial, food, portrait, travel, and wedding photography.
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Instead of making a plan each day about who, what, or where I was going to capture, like I did early on, I often found myself scrambling to take a picture of some random item in my house at 11pm just so I didn't miss a day. It doesn’t take a genius to explain that this is not the recipe to produce a collection of quality photos.  I tried to re-focus myself, committing to taking my camera with me when I left the house and carving out time to get a shot, but as my life got more full I would find myself forgetting more and more.  It wasn’t long before I began catching myself scrolling my phone while lying in bed, making sure I took a picture of something in the past 24 hours or at the very least had a snap story I could take a screenshot from to use for the blog. 

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Don’t get me wrong; I did take some fabulous photos throughout the last 8 months that I am very proud of, but I would argue that I would have still taken a large amount of those without being tied to this challenge.  A lot of what I photographed was because I was hired to photograph it – the fact that I needed to take a picture that day for my own personal blog had nothing to do with what I produced.  If I was out adventuring or something exciting was happening it wasn’t this project that reminded me to bring my camera – it was the sheer fact that I wanted to photograph whatever it was that I was doing.  But sometimes it just wasn’t worth it.  Sometimes I want to go for a walk with my mom, a paddle with my boyfriend, or play at the park with my niece and not have to stop – even once – to take a photo.  Sometimes I don’t want to haul around a multi-thousand dollar camera all day.  And sometimes I just wanted to enjoy the moment, rather than constantly working to get the right photo.

This isn’t to say that I didn’t learn some valuable things throughout this challenge. I learned to pay attention to the weather, keeping an eye out for horror frost or northern lights or really pretty skies.  I started going for walks or drives just to find beauty.  I began pulling over on the side of the road when I saw something that caught my eye, rather than letting it pass by.  I grew in creativity, trying to turn a mundane thing into something visually appealing.  I began planning adventures on my limited days off, making the most of discovering the beautiful world around me.  Sure, maybe I didn’t make it to day 365, but I learned some lessons, picked up some habits, had some fabulous experiences, and took some real nice photographs.

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