photo by John Givot
As we moved on from the scallops, the delectable cupcakes were next. We first began by testing out some shots of me holding the cupcake; sort of an offering if you will. Again, the shots just weren't coming across as Martha had hoped (she assured me my cupcake holding skills were perfectly intact and that I wouldn't be fired). We then moved on to sitting the cupcake on the table. Mike had to depart by this time, but John hung around. He wasn't shy about trying his hand at teaching Martha a few tricks of the camera. It was one of those moments where the student had an opportunity to show his skills in the profession he hoped to grow in, and it was fun to watch. Martha was all ears and open to hearing his thoughts on tweaking the lighting this way or angling the cupcake that way.
A friend once told me that if you're really passionate about something, you're never truly an expert at it because you continue to have the drive to learn more about it. I think that day in the studio was a perfect example. After years of food magazine editing and being involved in food photography, Martha was still open to suggestions about getting that perfect picture. On the flip side, I saw Martha's willingness to listen to the intern as a way for him to grow and teach what he knew thus far in his education to someone who many would consider to be an expert in this field. And in the end it made an exciting learning experience for all of us.
If you are somewhat of an expert in what you do, make sure you nuture those around you who are trying to learn a little bit more. Yes, sometimes you're too busy and just want to get the task at hand done, but if the opportunity presents itself, teach. The outcome is you will have given a little extra spark to someone that may take them a bit further in their life's accomplishments, and at the same time, you'll reinforce the knowledge, expertise, and most importantly, passion you have within you.