What are three words that would describe both your personality and your photographic style?
I tend to use the word Emotive for my photography in guidebooks, workshops, and everywhere on my website. While this describes my work beautifully, it’s not quite how I describe my personality! For personality I’d use the words peaceful and eccentric.
Tell us a bit about your biz!
My photography style is drawn to the dramatic and emotive ways we connect each other. I love to capture those raw moments that show you really, truly, authentically lived and create space for my clients to really have beautiful moments together.
While I absolutely love shooting, I find I am much more fulfilled teaching other photographers and witnessing their accomplishments after a workshop or mentoring session. It’s these moments I really feel true joy in what I am doing. I will be launching a coaching program soon and I am beyond thrilled to be able to live out this passion of mine in a way that also helps others.
How would you describe your ultimate dream shoot?
I often say that every shoot is my dream shoot! I ensure every shoot is styled in such a way that it becomes my dream each and every time I get behind the lens. I’ve done this by photographing strictly in the style I love, which attracts the clients who love the same elements. That being said, the only things I ever wish for during shoots are interesting light, clouds and wild wind.
Have you always used emotive prompts in your sessions, or was it something you came to after you'd been shooting for a while?
I definitely didn’t use emotive prompts right off the bat. Like most photographers, I had a list of poses I thought I had to hit to make my clients happy. As I started to work more naturally, I noticed I became much more attached to the client experience, which became more amazing after encouraging clients to share thoughtful words and experiences with each other, rather than stand or sit a certain way.
How has your experience been so far using the Show Me Your You prompts?
You never know which prompts are going to work best before you arrive to a shoot, so I’ve found the Show Me Your Prompts to be wonderful inspiration for when I’m in the moment; channeling the thoughts and feelings I wish to convey during the shoot.
What’s one of the most emotional experiences you’ve ever had in a session?
I was shooting an anniversary shoot for a couple who had been married for one year and I asked the groom to share with his bride the moment he knew he had fallen in love with her. At first I started photographing from further away and I didn’t think I was going to get the emotions I did from that simple prompt. As I moved in closer and closer to the couple, I noticed a tear gently falling down her face. It is really amazing for me to have provided that moment for them to have together. That is one thing I really love about using emotive prompts; it provides a space for people to share thoughts they may have never shared with one another, or haven’t taken the time to share for a long time.
What’s your favourite image you’ve ever taken?
I feel like my favorite image changes all the time!
However, there is one that stands out. It is a photo of a mother holding her son really closely. There was just this one moment of really incredible light that just spilled over them and after the moment was gone, it was all overcast again so that light really did it for me. I really quickly had to create all these tender moments to take advantage of the light right where it was as it came out! I also love that photo because it encapsulates all of my feelings about being a mother and my relationship with my children; it’s tender, it’s protective, and it’s beautiful.
What advice would you give to someone wanting to achieve more authentic moments, expressions and connections in their sessions?
Allow yourself to have a heightened awareness of the best moments of your everyday life and translate those into your shoots with other people. It’s often those small moments we brush off that are the best source of inspiration-- a long hug, a playful tousle of hair, or a quick dance around the kitchen. Channel into your shoots what those moments look like to you and let that guide you to prompt others into those same moments.
If you weren’t a photographer, what would you be?
I would probably still be a histologist at a pathology lab. It’s really a completely different way of using your mind. When I was working in the lab and shooting, I found they balanced each other out really well. I was able to use both sides of my brain and it was amazing to be obsessed with learning and creating and having both part of my life.
But, if I could choose any other career, I would teach art to children.