We recently launched something brand new here to this space- Fount Community Spotlights!
I love old stories & new friends…authenticity, aspiration & connection…Jesus & horses…art & wandering. I’ve been blessed to capture weddings professionally since 2002 & cherish each unique love story. I am enthralled with the illumination of film & the stories I’m allowed to tell through it. I currently reside on a small family farm, in Southern Oregon’s wine country, but have the pleasure of traveling worldwide throughout the year, for weddings and portrait commissions.
How long have you been in business?
14 years of bliss!
Did you always want to be a photographer? Would you share a bit about your journey into photography with us?
I came from a career in law. Not the most natural start for a creative, but one I found immensely rewarding all the same. Photography has always been firmly rooted in my life. During my career in law, I began to lean on my photography more and more as an outlet during frustrating cases. By the time I decided to pursue it full time, I realized getting to do so felt like winning the lottery for me. To allow my creative brain to stay switched on all the time, was such a luxury…a freedom I hadn’t truly felt since childhood.
Image by Betsy Blue Photography.
What kind of camera did you have when you first started?
When I was young, I used to play around with my dad’s old film gear he used in the war. Then I had an old kodak film camera that sparked a deeper flame. When I finally switched to digital, I bought a brand new Canon D60 which, back then, felt like the most incredible splurge. I learned so much with that camera!
What would you say was a pivotal moment for you in your business?
The day I finally purchased my first medium format camera…a Contax 645. It’s like that camera can read my mind. Every scan I get back makes me genuinely FEEL, all over again, what I was feeling when I took that photograph. It truly encompasses everything I’m deeply passionate about in my work. There’s nothing like it right now for me.
Do you have any advice for photographers who work a full time job in addition to their photography?
Just keep shooting! When I was shooting on the side during my legal career, I worked long hours. Some weeks I wouldn’t even pick up my camera. It wasn’t until I began shooting almost everyday, that I truly began to change as an artist. I learned so much during that time from just shooting regularly. I also sought out mentors, which I genuinely feel saved me years of learning on my own…especially when it came to business skills. Learn from other’s mistakes & let someone truly kind and talented help guide you through those first few years. You’ll never regret it.
If you’re a mother, do you have any advice for building a business while balancing the joys & demands of motherhood?
Never forget this quote: “The days may be long, but the years are short.”
Our babies are only little for such a short amount of time! That quote has been a mantra for me throughout my mothering years, and it continually keeps my priorities straight. For us, God-Family-Work priorities have to stay in that order or everything falls apart. I do most all of my office/computer work during naps and when the kids first go to sleep at night. Shooting days are arranged during times when they can be with family…my hubby, grandparents, etc. They don’t miss me as much when they’re looking forward to time with daddy or family, but they also understand that mommy has a life outside of being a mother, as well. I talk openly with them about balancing our schedule and we’re all very intentional about how each hour is spent. I feel it’s already created a wonderful understanding of priorities, time management and perspective in their lives. When I began homeschooling our daughter this year, it was such a natural fit into our already intentional life. Seeing her manage her own time, in the rhythm of our life, was so rewarding.
Image by Betsy Blue Photography.
What’s currently in your camera bag?
Contax 645 with Zeiss 80mm, Fuji 400h, Sekonic lightmeter, Canon 5DM3 with Canon 50mm 1.2, Macro filters, reflector/diffuser combo. I also rarely use my Canon 85mm 1.2, 24mm & 70-200.
What is a fun photography “toy” that you’re obsessed with?
Our gardens. 🙂 Seriously…there’s nothing that makes me happier than foraging some unique treasure to bring along to a shoot, or incorporate into something I’m working on. Nature is all around us and is so inspiring!
When you aren’t behind the camera, what are your favorite hobbies?
I’ve had a passion for horses since I was born, and began riding shortly after. That’s continued throughout my life and is still such a great source of peace, inspiration and joy for me. Beyond that, anything outdoors, reading, art, interior design, antiques. But seriously…when you’re a mom of littles, who has time for much else! 🙂
If you could photograph anyone in the world, who would it be?
My kids. Every move they make is precious to me. Every year that passes brings on such sadness at how quickly they’re growing up and also such joy at who they’re becoming. I try to just be present with them as much as I possibly can, and sneak in as many photos as they’ll let me.
If you could be photographed BY anyone in the world, who would it be?
Today…probably Elizabeth Messina. Everything she touches has light, and life and an organic beauty to it that just draws me in. I’m forever inspired by her work.
What does your editing playlist sound like?
Oh my…on any given day I truly range any where from Ray LaMontagne & Bon Iver to Pentatonix to the Pride & Prejudice Soundtrack to Jordan Feliz & Hillsong. I’m a HUGE fan of music and my circle is broad.
Will you share about an obstacle or difficult season in your business?
Honestly I believe the transition into motherhood had the greatest impact. The general lack of time, and energy for that matter, caused such an unrest in me. Before kids, I was very ambitious, high energy, and consumed with my work. I worked all day, all night, until the job was done. After kids, I struggled to get my footing on how to balance everything when I lacked sleep, energy and my priorities changed. Overall, my children have given me the greatest gifts of perspective, patience, humility, priority, abiding love, selflessness and empathy. Nothing else has ever taught me as much in my life, so intimately in my soul, as my kids.
Where or When do you feel most inspired as an artist?
Usually when I’m traveling or exploring…but I genuinely find inspiration all around me. Time is probably the biggest contributor. If I have time to be still, creativity will find me.
Image by Betsy Blue Photography.
Describe to us your dream portrait session:
Anyone, anywhere…surrounded by matte white, soft light and a little piece of nature. 🙂
What are 3 of the top best financial investments you have made in your business?
Mentoring, quality glass (lenses), and business management software.
What is your best piece of advice for a photographer who is just starting out?
Pay for quality 1-on-1 mentoring with an experienced photographer, never leave home without a camera, and just keep shooting!
Do you have a favorite quote to live by?
No, but I have several books full of them!
What do you want people to say about your work long after you’re gone?
I would rather people remember my character, through my work…instead of just my art alone. I strive to connect with the wonderful souls I’m blessed to know through my work. I love people, I value their trust in me, and I’m honored by the work they allow me to do for them. If they find value in my work, that’s just icing on the cake.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever been given?
If you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life. Someone once asked me, if I could do anything in the world, and money wasn’t an object, what would you do? I took that to heart and feel blessed to know I’m doing it.
What is something in your business, brand, or work that you want to grow in for 2017?
Just making more time to help others… I love being involved in creative workshops, mentoring new photographers and working on branding with creatives that have a true passion for what they do, but need help with how to brand themselves. It gives me so much joy to be apart of another creative’s journey.