I was born and raised in Spokane, WA and continue to live here. I’ve been married for going on 11 years later this month to my husband, Steve. We have 2 kiddos- Riley age 6.5 and Aubrey age 4.5. 4 years ago we built a house out on my husband’s family property. It has been nothing I would have ever have asked for – 10 acres, outside of city limits, surrounded by horses, cows, coyotes, and peacocks, but I’m loving it. I love to bake, read, and shop.
How long have you been a photographer?
I have loved taking photos since I was in high school, but it wasn’t until after having my son and really even more so after my daughter arrived that I began to study photography. I have been in business for 3 years now and love continuing to grow and learn.
And what is your area of expertise?
I don’t know that I’m really an “expert” in anything yet, but I do love seniors. I have definitely grown that side of my business the most.
How did you come to specialize in working with seniors?
I always laugh that they initially fell into my lap. Although I marketed to babies and families, I didn’t get many…but seniors seemed to find me. After doing a few, I realized I really loved them. I began to pursue them and I study as much as can about senior portraiture. I’ve also recently started doing more couples and have really loved working with them and capturing their love.
Please share with us your absolute favorite photograph you’ve ever taken and tell us the story behind it, why it speaks to you, etc.
My favorite definitely changes frequently. Each session seems to bring a new favorite. Right now it is definitely this shot of my two kiddos together. I had a former client make the teepee for us (much thanks to Made with Love by Caty)! I told them kind of where to sit so I could see them best, but then they did the rest. They are so loving to each other and this image perfectly captures their close relationship.
How would you describe your style?
LOL … Ever evolving.. If I have to put words to it I’d say, warm, hazy, romantic, emotional. I’ve realized that most all my favorites embody these feelings. I want my images to evoke an emotional response.
What gear is in your bag?
I’m a Canon girl! Currently in Kelly Moore Hobo I have my 7D, my 70-200 2.8, and my Tamron 17-50.
If you could only use one lens what would it be?
Definitely the 70-200! It’s only downfall is that is too long to use indoors.
Are you considering any new gear purchases this year?
I’m definitely going to be looking at a new laptop to do my editing on. I’d love upgrade to the Mk III, but I don’t know if both purchases will be in the cards for next year.
What is your go-to camera shop?
I love Huppins! It is our local camera shop and I turn to shop local whenever I can!
How do you stay motivated?
I try to get out and stretch myself creatively. I find if I shoot the same thing and the same locations all the time I lose motivation quickly. Give me something new and fresh and I’m on top of it!
What makes your job easy?
A client that listens to my advice prior to their session. LOL
Do you prefer to work in the studio, on-location, or both and why?
I love being on location, especially for seniors, but I recently converted our guest room into a small studio space and I’ve been enjoying working there. I’m sure in the winter (which can be WAY too long here) I’ll be very glad that I took the plunge.
One of the things that sets me apart is my boutique style business. Clients do their ordering in person. I walk the client through everything prior to their session as well as after. Another thing I strive to set myself apart with is my creativity. I don’t have standard sessions where I do the same thing every time. I want each session to have its own unique qualities.
Do you use a Mac or PC?
I’m a PC girl.
Tell us about your image processing style and the software you use.
I use both LR and CS5 to edit my images. I do a quick basic edit in LR and then take them into CS5 to finish them off. I’ve become a huge Michelle Kane fan and use her actions almost exclusively to edit my images. I love that I can take them and make them each my own by tweaking the layers.
Have you attended any workshops that you found to be helpful in your work?
I have attended 2 After Darks, and am looking forward already to my 3rd hopefully next year. Both times they have had an amazing impact on my work and skills, but also my confidence and have empowered me to make the changes I’ve made to be where I am today. I’ve also done Phaunt’s LR and Photoshop courses and highly recommend them as well.
Tell us about your long-term goals.
My long term goal is to really be able to help provide for my family through my business. I’d love to convert one of our out buildings into a large studio space and take on some of the big name studios in town.
Best advice for new photographers breaking into the business?
Get legal set things up the right way, and continue to learn. Get involved with a great group of women (I couldn’t imagine being in business without my 4TLoF girls!) that will support you and give you the plain hard truth when needed.
If you could choose anyone to do a photo shoot of you and your family, who would your choose?
Honestly, I don’t follow many other photographers. I’m so in awe of the talent here on 4TLoF that I don’t go in search much beyond our group, so I’d have to say either Jules Trandem or Rebecca Knowles would be on the top of my list!
What does photography mean to you?
Photography is definitely my artist outlet. After dancing for 11 years, photography has definitely replaced that artistic release that dance use to provide. It brings me joy, fulfillment, accomplishment, and so much more.
What’s your guilty pleasure?
Definitely coffee! Another local love- Dutch Bros- their Cocomo is one my favorites!
My weakness is…
Definitely my stubbornness. I hate to ask for help and I hate to be wrong. lol
My strength is…
Also my stubbornness. I will not give up until I get it right and I don’t quickly admit defeat.
Groan and then hit the snooze.
Finish this quote: When it rains…
Look for the rainbow. Our last couple years as a family have been filled with lots of rain and it has poured. I’ve learned to look at each circumstance or at least through the circumstance and try to find the rainbow. Like when my husband and son both had surgery within a couple weeks of each other I kept reminding myself to be thankful for all the family time we got to have. lol
Who do you love?
My family! I’m the oldest of 7 children, so our family has gotten quite large over the last few years. I love watching both my brothers and sisters grow and change and seeing all the nieces and nephews being added to the family. We’re waiting on one right now and I’m so excited to get to hold her for the first time.
As I said before I’m not much of a photographer follower. I have recently started doing some couponing, so I’ve been reading lots of blogs about that.
Oh goodness! Don’t get me started! LOL My husband wants one so bad and I’ve told him I don’t want him to get one. Although recently I’ve started to change my mind and he keeps trying to talk me into getting one with him. I starting to consider it…… sssshhh don’t tell him though!
What’s on your iPod?
I have quite the collection. I love music! Before I had kids and the noise that accompanies them I had music on all the time. I love Adele, Kelly Clarkson, Daughtry, Nickelback, Black Eyed Peas, The Script, Pink…. The only thing I really don’t listen to is rap and country.
Morning or night?
High up on my list is Rome. I’d love to go back to Roatan, Honduras. We’ve stopped three times on cruises and I’d love to go spend more time there.