Are you a morning or evening person? Morning for sure. Since I also am a full-time art director and am designing all day long, my eyes tend to dwindle towards the later hours.
Something that’s overrated: “Stuff.” I’m not a nick-knack person. And I tend to be ruthless when it comes to saving things. Sometimes I think it’s calming and very refreshing to have a clean slate to start with. It keeps me motivated.
Something that’s underrated: Hugs. It always warms people up. I’ve found that when it comes to meeting clients or people you don’t necessarily have a personal relationship with yet, hugging is a sure way into someone’s heart and circle of trust. And let’s face it – in our line of work, the quicker we can warm people up, get them comfortable with us and being in front or our lenses, the better!
Website/blog(s) you visit daily: I pull inspiration from many places. Photography, Design, and Interior Design are among my favorite things in the whole wide world and so I’m constantly grabbing ideas and inspiration from my well-organized bookmarks toolbar on my browser, which is also synced on my iPad and phone for when I’m on the go! Among the hundreds of links I have saved are: Design Sponge, the identity and photo section on Graphic Exchange, Remodelista, Looks Like Good Design, and of course the Photo Betties blog!
Who is the photographer that inspires you most? Similarly to my many interests, there are many people and things that inspire me. I’m inspired by driven businessmen and women. I’m inspired by people that truly value the meaning of relationships and family. When it comes to photography, I love those who are able to capture the simple, story-telling details and those who are able to set a scene with a click of the shutter. My friend and business partner, Noelle, is also an inspiring person to me. She’s hardworking yet carefree with an incredible passion for life. As “work wives”, it helps to have someone help you think about life, what’s important in it and how you want to live it when you are submerged in the world of to-do’s and “what’s next?” I can get a little neurotic at times and its nice to have someone like her to keep my eyes on the prize. But In short, I’m inspired by those who are simply successful in living life.
Tell us about your very first shoot: My first photoshoot ever was in college. I did high-contrast black and white fashion-driven ads of my roommates. This was when I knew I needed to be involved with photography whether it was in my advertising job or otherwise. My first “professional” shoot was for the ad agency I work with. We were doing an ad campaign where we used boat chains (which are really heavy) to tie down business owners depicting how they feel trapped by the fees they incur when their customers swipe their credit cards. It was a pretty straight forward shoot, but to make it dramatic we invested in some lighting equipment to get the shots I wanted. Of course I have never used strobes before, so I called my long-time college friend Noelle, the day before and she helped me practice all night on Ruby, my beloved pooch, in my 550 sq ft apartment. For moral support – and in case I spazzed out with what I learned the night before – she came with me the next day for the shoot too. That’s what makes a true friend, and an even better business partner.
What is the one thing in your bag you would throw yourself in front of a speeding train for? Nada. Unless my dog Ruby somehow snuck in there trying to find her bone that she recently hid, everything can go. Again, it’s just “stuff.”
I am passionate about: I’m passionate about people. I love hearing their life stories. Occasionally when I’m on the train or in traffic, I imagine what those stories could be of the people that are sitting next to me. Sometimes I feel like I should have been a psychologist just so I could talk to people for fun. But now that I shoot weddings, I get to experience the stories right with those people as they are happening. And then I’m able to have them go through it all again when they see the images, which is pretty special.
To tweet or not to tweet: I’m not a tweeter. I’m barely a facebook-er. I consider Noelle our social media butterfly!
What are the top 5 things on your “photographer’s wish list”?
Since we’re still constantly adding equipment to our repitoir, it keeps changing. But currently it is another camera body, a 16-35 mm wide angle lens, some lens babies, a fish eye, and a calendar that gives me an 8th day in a week :)
What do you find most difficult about being a photographer? For me, this is more about a personal struggle than with me being a photographer. I wouldn’t necessarily call myself a perfectionist. But I do constantly find myself trying for the “perfect shot”. I’m my own worst critic and I’m realizing more and more that it’s important to just let things “be” and have them be beautiful just the way they are.
What do you find most rewarding? The most rewarding part about being a photographer is the cathartic drive home with Noelle after a shoot. It’s the photographer’s high, when my “morning person” attitude quickly morphs into “night owl” who can’t sleep. It’s exhilirating knowing the shots you were just able to get for your “new friends” and knowing how they are anxiously awaiting your email announcing their “sneak peek” on our blog or the ultimate winner, the email we send them with a subject line of “You’re Images are Ready!!!!!!” It truly never gets old and our clients forever look at us as their “memory catchers.”