Exposure: Interview Series

exposure
Meet Vanessa from Sweet Rose Photography! We’re loving this interview and especially what she has to say about our furs- scroll on down to find out!
1)      Who are you and where are you located?
Hey! I’m Vanessa, I am currently located in Leesville, Louisiana. I am a military spouse and mother of two beautiful girls, one who loves my camera and one who runs from it. I’m a California girl, who started out on the path to become a teacher. I found my love for photography through my wedding photographer – upon searching for one I discovered I really had an eye for beautiful photographs.
2)      Do you have a home studio, rented space, or are you on location?
I have a home studio, currently. I dream of the day I can expand into a retail location!
3)      What subjects are your primary focus and which do you enjoy shooting the most?
I specialize in posed newborn photography, I absolutely love love love connection & enjoy shooting parent-child connections more than anything. When there is feeling in a photograph, my heart absolutely sings.
4)      There are so many different kinds of camera’s out there! What do you use and how did you decide on that particular one?
I shoot with a Canon 5D mark iii. I originally learned on a Nikon camera about 10 years ago, and honestly, the two are comparable. I definitely switched to Canon for convenience, because of where we lived and the options available. Once you choose a brand it’s hard to switch, investing in lenses & camera brand-specific gear and all.
5)      While we’re talking about equipment, what lens do you prefer to use and why?
Gosh it’s hard to say, it depends on what I am shooting. For newborns & studio work, I definitely prefer my Canon 24-70mm f/2.8L II lens. It is tack sharp, shows amazing details. Outdoors I switch between that lens and my 100mm, though I would really prefer a longer focal length for that dreamy bokeh!!
6)      We hear a lot of debate on natural light vs. studio light, what are your thoughts on the subject?
I think if you know how to use light, how to manipulate light, how to diffuse light, how to light your subject, it doesn’t matter what you are using.
7)      How did you learn to be a photographer?
Reading, primarily. I absolutely love to learn. I started by soaking up every photography magazine that I could, then moving to online forums, and most recently, CreativeLive. I have also shadowed, assisted, and second shot for multiple photographers, had hands on training in the field of newborn posing, and am looking for a posing mentor this year. I would absolutely love to learn everything I can, become a master, and one day be able to pass on my knowledge to others.
8)      What or who inspires you? Do you have a photographer you look up to?
Ah man this is a tough one. I have some amazing women out there who I really admire. Kristen Mackey of Son Kissed for her awesome posing, of course the amaaaazing Julia Kelleher who really loves to capture connection, which I love and relate to, Kelly Brown for the color feeling in her images and posing, Blueberry Beignet Photography has some excellent posing & the cutest setups. I also look up to people like Mark Wallace, who has mastered studio lighting and manipulation, and Sue Bryce, who creates awesome soft natural lighting. There are too many talented photographers out there to name them all, and I’m sure I have forgotten some of them.
9)      When you’re doing a photoshoot or working an event, what is your favorite part?
Hands down, seeing the parent’s reaction to their images, and feeling the amount of love between them and their baby.
10)   What have you struggled with the most while having a career as a professional photographer? Any tips for somebody who is just starting out?
Inconsistency. Some months I am completely slammed, and some I’m not. I have learned to take the down months and make them productive, come up with a new marketing strategy, design new promotional materials, network with others, and most importantly, taking time to be creative. Don’t ever let your overwhelming schedule take away your creativity, or your fire will dwindle. Find balance and Set Limits for yourself, you will be happy you did. One of the hardest things to do is reply to an inquiry with the words “I am not available.” Network, and find other awesome photographers in your area to refer out to.
11)   Do you have any unconventional tips or tricks for getting your little clients to cooperate during a shoot?
Prepare them! I don’t think that is unconventional, but I do think that too many people show up to a photo session without any idea of what to expect. Be a leader, they came to you for your vision, tell them what you want them to do. They aren’t models, they’re people, and they have no idea what you see from your side of the camera.
12)   Where would you like to see your company in the next five years?
Growing. I would love to reach a broader audience, connect more mothers to their infants through photography. It truly is my passion, and it is so important.

Before I go, I want to say one more thing. I have a wool allergy, Custom Photo Props has made it possible for me to use fur in my images without sneezing on the baby or breaking out in bumps all over my arms. So many people are so so careful with everything they do when it comes to newborn photography, and I would absolutely just hate the day someone’s baby lays on a wool fur and breaks out because of it. What an amazing service Custom Photo Props has provided me. Not to mention, their items ship so super fast, the fur is so soft, and completely gorgeous! And the best part: The ladies who run this company are sweet, kind, and have excellent customer service!  www.customphotoprops.com

Vanessa
Sweet Rose sweetrosebabies.com

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Thanks, Vanessa!!

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