I met Jamie on OSP, and loved her work and personality instantly although I haven’t met her in person. This is why WPPI 2012 is double important and exciting for me because I will get to meet this talented wedding photographer. This is my pleasure to introduce Jamie to you all. Find out more about her.
photo credit: Cherie Hogan Photography
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
> I am a full time wedding and portrait photographer based in Las Vegas, NV. I am married to a wonderful man and have a super cute 3 year old daughter. I got a degree in Business Management from UNLV because I was not sure what I wanted to do when I grew up, but knew I wanted to not have a boss. I love to travel, eat good food, and hang out with my family.
Describe yourself in 3 words.
> This is hard too, lol, but I am loving, introverted, and constantly doing/busy body. Kind of weird words to choose, but that is what comes to mind.
How long have you been doing photography?
>It is actually coming up on 2 years that I got my first DSLR, August 29th my birthday. Once I got my camera I quickly realized I wanted to be great with it and create what I saw in my head in camera. I immersed myself in everything photography for a little under a year before I started taking paid shoots. I started second shooting weddings almost exactly a year after I got my camera and started offering weddings on my own early 2011. I know it doesn’t seem like a long time, but when you are passionate about something and you spend all of your time learning about it and practicing, you can really become pretty good in not too much time.
What inspired you to become a photographer?
> Ever since I was younger, at least probably Junior High school; I was really intrigued by photography. I always carried around my little point and shoot camera to take pictures of people in my life so that I could always look back and remember them. I always thought that photographs were so important to have and I wanted to be in charge of acquiring them for me and my close family. As I started to get a little older I started to fall more in love with the artistry of it and thought it would just be such a cool job to have. So I wanted to be a photographer for quite a while, but didn’t really do anything to pursue it. It seemed like such a hard goal to achieve, especially when I only thought I could make money doing commercial jobs. Then one day it clicked and I knew at that moment I wanted to be a wedding photographer.
What kind of photography do you do? Why?
>Right now I do mainly portrait work and weddings. For my portraits I focus on trash the dress, seniors, children, engagements, and boudoir. As I build up my client base and continue to learn, I know I would like to make my focus smaller and only offer a few types of portraits. Right now though I still pretty much take whatever I can get.
What is your goal with photography?
> My goal is to be a successful wedding photographer, to provide my clients with beautiful images that they will love forever, and for me to be happy about the work that I deliver. I of course will always want to be improving and getting better, but I want to get past the point where I don’t beat myself up over my work anymore.
Is there any photographer whose work you followed?
> I started following a lot of photographers when I first started out and now I don’t keep up with as many of them anymore. Some I really love are Susan Stripling, Jasmine Star, Jerry Ghionis, Jessica Claire…and those are pretty much my favorites although I really do like a lot more.
Where do you get your inspiration from?
> I get inspired from other photographers, but try my best to not copy their work just pull ideas from them, also magazines, movies, and just seeing cool places and things when I am out and about.
What is your style of photography?
> I would say that my style is modern, edgy, with fashion flair. I know not all my work fits that style, but ideally, I would like them all to. For weddings I try to do a lot of photojournalism and I also try to do that with my young children sessions.
Describe your work/photos in 3 words.
> This is always so hard for me, just 3 words is tough. I love emotional images, they tend to be my favorite, but when I pose its more fashion inspired. I like and prefer my wedding clients to be alternative/edgy/different which is also how I like my locations to be. So those are kind of my words.
What is in your camera bag?
> I shoot Nikon. My main camera is the D700 (Gosh I love that thing) and have the D90 for backup. I am currently all primes and shoot the 50mm 1.8, 85mm 1.8, 35mm 2.0, and the 60mm 2.8 macro. I have a sb-600 flash and two Vivitar 383s for backup and off camera. I have cybersyncs for my transmitter and receiver. I use the cheetah stand for my light stand and I freakin love it, I always have a hard time with regular light stands and this one is plop and go. That is my main stuff I think I am not leaving out anything important. I use Lightroom 3 for editing and have photoshop CS2 for more detailed work. I still have so much to buy, but I am confident I can do the job with what I have.
What area of your photography would you like to improve upon?
> I would love to get better at off camera flash. In lots of locations and situations, knowing how to use it and having it available can really save your butt and get you some pretty amazing images.
Finish the following sentences….
Growing up I wanted to be …my own boss
If I could change something in my life I would …..have gotten serious about photography earlier, sometimes I worry I am too old to get into the game.
I want to photograph …a super fabulous wedding where the bride has lots of amazing tattoos
My favorite quote…the source of your frustrations are your unfulfilled expectations
When I am not shooting, I like to ….spend time with my daughter and husband
Next equipment I want to purchase …the 70-200 28 VRII.I am actually saving for it right now and it is going to be so hard not to buy anything else until I get it.
Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
> Being a super awesome successful local and destination wedding photographer.
Which country do you want to visit the most?
> I really want to go to Prague and Japan as well.
If you had the option to move anywhere in the world, where would you like to move?
> I sometimes think I would really love to live in Washington State or Oregon. I have never been to either, but I am pretty sure I will love it.
What advice would you give to other new photographers?
> Study study study and practice practice. I don’t think it is necessary for you to go to school and get a degree to be successful. You must have a passion for it though, or else it is going to be hard to put in all the work that you must before you can get to a point where you can charge for your work. If you want to do weddings, second shoot some before you start offering them. Weddings are hard and you cannot take the chance to mess it up for somebody. There is so much information out there, so many other photographers share on their blogs and on forums. The conventions, like WPPI are so full of information as well and there is some serious networking that can go on there.