This week’s featured photog is Browntography! She’s fun, she’s quirky, her work is colorful and bright, just as I assume she is in person. :) Thank you so much for joining and chatting with us today!
Q. Welcome, Kathy, aka Brownie! Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I’m the next best thing since sliced bread. I love that I have created a successful business and super fun personal life off my nickname Brownie. I’m told I have a high-pitched voice and I laugh way too much. I’m 27 years new and live an extraordinary life with my dog Penny. Funny tees make me smile, Starbucks & I are like PB & J. My Mom is my biggest inspiration. I Google everything. Life is good.
Q. How and when did you get into photography?
I’ve always been a the biggest geek and proud of it. I loved the feel and surprise of Polaroids as a kid. With that said, in college I was finally able to take a few film courses that helped me cope with a few struggles in my life. When I was 19 I took my brother Andy, then a 1-year-old, out to play in our backyard. He took interest in our hose and I decided to turn the water on. I was able to capture his very 1st reaction as water came out of a hose. His innocence changed my life.
Q. How long have you been in business and what do you specialize in?
Browntography turned 2 years old June 2012! I still get emotional at how my little business has blossomed! I specialize in children’s photography including maternity, newborn, and engagement sessions. I just started covering daytime weddings. Very exciting new venture!
Q. Natural light v. studio light?
Natural light is definitely more complex and always a challenge. I never use flash unless I cover an event. I truly love the way natural light peeks in through trees, makes eyes glisten at different angles, and makes my subject feel so real. The best part is that no 2 sessions ever look the same.
Q. Tell us about your camera gear. Any gear on your wish list?
I shockingly shoot with a Canon Rebel XS and a 50mm 1.4. Crossing fingers to finally purchase the 5D Mark II in 2013. I wish & one day will own the 24mm 1.4, 100mm, 2.8, & the 24-70mm 2.8. A girl can dream.
Q. How would you describe your style of shooting; your style of editing?
I rarely, if ever, plan any of my sessions. I love the pressure and moment of surprise. I go off an idea and then make it my very own to match each client’s personality. I only research the location and try my best to find nooks with that special glow. I then drool over Pinterest pins and Google the type of session I will be shooting that day for last minute inspiration. Call me crazy, but it totally works for me! My style of editing is definitely clean and realistic with pops of color. Color is beautiful. My goal is to always have the image as true as the day I captured it. I use the amazing actions from Pure Actions for Photographers and Photoshop CS5. The spot healing tool & clone tool are my best friends.
Q. What’s your favorite subject to photograph?
I love capturing 1 year olds. There’s nothing more awesome than the 1-year-old milestone and a cake smash! Belly bumps make me happy.
Q. What’s your favorite time of day to take photos?
Sunset Golden Hour hands down.
Q. What’s your best marketing tool? Where do most of your clients come from?
I owe my business to social media. I am obsessed with anything social. I’m the biggest social butterfly on & off line! I am on about 5-6 social network sites, blog, & website. I also work with a few local vendors who definitely scratch my back with awesome referrals.
Q. What has been the best advice you have received on your photography journey?
The best advice was from a fellow fashion photographer and friend. “Don’t look at competition as your enemy. If you lose one client to a competitor, there will always be another client.” With that said, I never compare my work with other local photographers. A client that truly wants to become an official Brownie will not hesitate to book me.
Q. What’s something you wish you knew when you first started out?
I wish I would’ve taken a graphic design or Photoshop workshop. I have spent countless hours trying to teach myself things that I’m sure I could’ve easily learned in a course before kick-starting my business.
Q. From what or whom do you draw your creative inspiration?
I sometimes take walks and listen to life around me. I think people are so caught up in their daily nonsense they forget to breathe and live. I appreciate the little things like watching my dog in deep sleep. I’ve always been told that I don’t look at a subject or object for what it is. I enjoy its color, texture, purpose, etc. Anything quirky, out of the norm, and nerdy definitely catches my eye.
Photographer’s I drool daily over:
Jinky Art: www.jinkyart.com.au/
Laura Leslie Photography: www.lauralesliephotography.com/
Emily Anne Photography: www.emannephotography.com/
Kay English Photography: www.kayenglishphotography.com/
Q. Any parting words of inspiration or tips for those starting out?
In a nutshell, be confident, not arrogant. Even on the worst of days, I tell myself I can do it. I will do it & it gets done. A good cry goes a long way. But, never let any competition, negativity, or money keep you from fulfilling your amazing dream. Always treat others like you’d like to be treated. Watch your words and do your best to showcase your awesome personality through your images. It’s okay to decline work. My personal motto: “Never lose confidence in yourself. You never know who’s looking up to you.” I live an amazing life and so can you!