An Ode to Some of My Favorites

May 03, 2011

People often ask me how I got started in photography, who I look up to, who inspires me and so on and so forth.  The story of how I got started is coming, but today I will focus on who inspires me.  I have had the opportunity to meet, work with and watch a few photographers that make me smile just when I think of them.  I thought I would introduce you to a few of them, tell you what each one means to me both as a person and photographer, they following are photos they have taken.  The first being the most important of all of them, my husband.  Today is our third anniversary, he is my favorite.

Noah is the reason I am a photographer.  He is my teacher, my best friend, my teammate and my biggest fan.  He is talented and tenacious and when we shoot together, even when he's kind enough to schlepp bags for me he is always inside my head, thinking two steps ahead so when I ask for our wide lens he already has it out.  We work well together because he sees things differently than I do so our pictures are the same, but different.  He has a tendency to be logical and over-prepared when I'm minimalistic and usually frustrated when I forget to bring something he would have remembered.  I couldn't be doing this without him and that is something I love to admit.

Erica Rose is one of the most incredibly talented and kind and wonderful friends I've had the privilege of having.  If she were never a photographer I would still consider her one of my favorites on another post about great people.  We met our freshman year of college at a small Bible college in Canada and as destiny would have it, we moved to Chicago at the same time for our husband's to attend seminary.  Her first year officially shooting weddings I think she did 9 (I'm sorry if that's wrong) and the next she did 43.  I know, right?  Her style is genuine, authentic and true to the situation.  She captures smiles and poses as if she were trying to capture lightning bugs at dusk, with all the ease and excitement of a barefoot little girl and her best friends.  But don't let that giddyness fool you, she is a serious professional with skills I can only hope to acquire.  So for now, I sit in awe that she's so talented and in even more awe that she's my friend.

Kelly Brown took the photos at my friends Samarah and Brian's wedding two Septembers ago.  After seeing their engagement pictures I was beyond excited to see their wedding photos and truthfully intimidated to meet their photographer.  And then I met Kelly and my excitement was realized and my intimidation eased immediately.  Her ability to both use and make light are seriously unparalleled.  Take a look at her work, she's phenomenal and to top it off, she's remarkably nice.  Noah and I had just photographed our first wedding and we were amateurs at best and she was enthralled.  I asked her some questions and she took time in the middle of a very busy night to answer me, laugh with me and encourage me.  I look to her work as much as I can for inspiration but also remember her kindness towards me for anyone who approaches me at a wedding to ask questions.

I look to many others like Jasmine Star, Chase Jarvis and Jose Villa for inspiration, hope and encouragement but I have been honored to witness the work of or work with these fine people.

And because everything here is in black and white I'll throw in a little color by my cousin Cortney, because she's amazing and I miss her.  Will she ever be shooting weddings too?  I don't know, she's a really good personal trainer/swim coach/administrator/lefse maker/jam canner.  But she's great, I miss her and we have fun together.

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  1. Congrats on living your dream and being passionate! :)

  2. Ali! I'm honored to be included in this post - thanks for your sweet words and for your friendship! Maybe someday we really will shoot a royal wedding together... :)


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