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3775 Market Stree NE
Salem, Oregon 97301

We're a small-town, family owned and operated photo lab that never gave up on film. Today we provide top-notch film processing, scanning, and printing services from film and digital with the best customer service in the industry.

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Filtering by Tag: PV Takeover

Brandy Jackson

PhotoVision Team

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Life hit me straight in the face in 2014 when I realized my mom didn’t have much longer to live. I found myself making decisions I didn’t think I would have to make for another 20–30 years. My mom didn’t have much time, and I wanted to spend every second that I could with her. I was desperate for time. 

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My story isn’t the typical “my-grandfather-gave-me-his-old-film-camera.” I was desperate for extra time and I was willing to do anything just to be with my mom for one more day . . . one more hour. I needed to find a job (career) that could give me this extra time I so desperately desired . . .

Super sick from chemo, my mom could no longer work. Because of this, she couldn’t afford my sister’s senior photos. That was when the light bulb came on—*I* could take my sister’s senior photos. And after that, I could take all of her friends’ senior photos as well. This opportunity was exactly what I was looking for.

After booking half of my sister’s graduating glass, business hit me—and hit me hard. I didn’t have all that extra time I was looking for, I had less . . . but my mom and I made it work. We would talk on the phone all day, every day while I edited. Sometimes we said nothing at all, but just listened to each other on the phone in silence. I took another look at my business model and tried to outsource my editing to create more time, but I still wasn’t happy with the results. This is when I learned about the world of film . . . 

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Other than disposable cameras, I was brand new to film. Growing up poor, we only had disposable cameras, I didn’t even know about medium format film, but I instantly fell in love with the way it looked. It really did give me the feeling that everyone talks about—where you completely fall in love with the look of film—even though I didn’t know it then. 

I didn’t transition to film until a year after my mom passed away. Losing her helped me find myself through my art. It helped me recognize emotion and translate it through my images, to watch for special moments I would have missed in the past. Film was the cherry on top. 

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Because of film, I became so much more passionate about photography, about people, about their stories. These images I capture for my clients will be cherished and shared for the rest of their lives. Every shot matters.

Shooting film, I found my purpose as a wedding photographer. To capture emotion in a way that my clients didn’t know was possible for them. To give them “that feeling.”

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Film helped me express emotion through my images and gave me “that feeling” I was talking about when I saw it for the first time. Film was the period at the end of the sentence for my work. It completed my work. Film gave me the time I was looking for, but it was too late. 

It was too late for that time in my life, but film gave me the freedom I needed *today*—to live my life as I please, with enough time to do the things I want. To travel the world and be with my mom in a way I couldn’t have when she was here. To talk to her every single day and hang out with her without being stuck behind a computer. To work *on* my business instead of *in* my business, and to live out what my mom last knew me as—a Photographer. 

📷 by Brandy Jackson on Fuji400H + Delta3200 with a Contax645.

Carlos Hernandez

PhotoVision Team

Hello friends, @carloshernandezphoto here, excited to take over @photovisionprints for the next few days! I am a wedding and lifestyle photographer based out of the coolest town (in my opinion) Portland, OR. I feel blessed to be a part of the most memorable moments in so many people’s lives. My desire as an artist is to create photos that are full of life and express beauty in an honest way. For this reason, I choose to photograph people with #film. This allows me to slow down and turn an eye to detail to document moments that are meaningful.

A little background about me—I graduated from Oregon State University as a structural civil engineer in 2007. Soon after, I became a licensed professional engineer, where I learned the importance of detail, precision and organization. Since 2012, I have worked as a professional photographer, incorporating the important skills I learned as an engineer into my workflow. All the couples I work with really enjoy that I have had that previous training, because it allows me to see the world from a different perspective and it translates in my photographs.

📷 by @maria.lamb on #fuji400h with a #contax645 at Willow Lake Estates in Brush Prairie, Washington.

I began my photography journey at a very young age. I can still remember the very first camera I bought with 50 soda caps and just a few pesos (yes, I grew up in Mexico). I was 9 at the time. The camera was in the shape of a soda can and took 16mm film cartridges. Ever since then, I was known as the “camera guy” in my family. I took photos of everything, mainly family and landscapes. I continued that passion all the way through college where I was convinced to photograph a friend’s wedding. I quickly realized just how much I really enjoyed wedding photography, but I truly didn’t know much about it. I contacted a few established photographers in southern Oregon and bugged them till they allowed me to second shoot for them. I was determined to learn as much as possible, and as they say, the rest is history.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645 at Lowndes Grove in Charleston South Carolina.

On a more personal note, I have been married for 3 years to the smartest and most supportive woman I know. @athinahernandez is my beautiful Finnish goddess. I don’t know what I would do without her. My business has flourished only because of her support. She works very hard behind the scenes to make sure I stay on task and is my assistant on most shoots. It is a blast to have her as a business partner. When we are not working, you can find us traveling the world, either at a lake, on top of a mountain or simply exploring new cities. We can’t seem to stay in one place for too long. We are also foodies, gotta love a good meal, we try to experience as many different cuisines as possible. If you ever find yourself in the Pacific Northwest, please reach out to us. We love meeting new people and would really enjoy showing you around our town.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #nikonF3 in Yacolt, Washington.

I remember when I was first learning film as a child, the things I loved the most were the sounds of the shutter and the film advancing. Two years after I began shooting professionally, I remember seeing the magic other wedding photographers were creating with #film. I immediately fell in love again and wondered why I ever left that medium behind. I dusted off my old camera and began shooting film again. I tried several #mediumformat cameras until I found the one that works for me. I use the Pentax 645NII with a converted Zeiss 80mm f/2 lens.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii in Cannon Beach, Oregon.

There are many reasons why I love using film to capture love stories. From loading film, to using a hand-held meter, to envisioning what the exposure will look like, to making sure my camera settings are set correctly, to hearing the sound of the shutter, I love it all. Knowing that I won’t get to see my images for at least a few days only builds the anticipation. Film really does make you slow down and think about what you are capturing. It allows me to be truly aware of my surroundings. I believe film has made me a better artist.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at Lowndes Grove in Charleston South Carolina.

I am a sucker for beautiful landscapes as backgrounds. Give me a simple, yet beautifully styled subject and a grand view, like the ones we have here in the #PacificNorthwest, and I am happy. Those are some of my favorite photography sessions. I have been to many places around the globe but I keep coming back to this little pocket of the world—the Pacific Northwest.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii in Columbia River Gorge, Oregon.

Speaking of my favorite images to take, it’s no secret that I like to capture intimate moments. Close crops strip away all the distractions surrounding a special moment. I usually spend time with my couples before a photo session getting to know them, this helps create a more relaxed, comfortable shooting environment. Every couple is different and shows affection in unique ways. I try to really crop close on these moments to emphasize the ways they show their love for each other. Before your next shoot, try to get to know the people you are photographing, before you point your camera at them. You will be happy you did.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at the Cotton Gin Inn, in Edenton, North Carolina.

I am sure you have heard this before, but capturing movement is one of the best ways to tell a story. However, manual focus on medium format film cameras can be really tricky, especially when shooting wide open. I have come up with a few tricks on how to get images with movement  in focus. One way I deal with this is to pan with my subject at the same speed they are moving and snap a couple of photos. Another way, which in my opinion creates better results, is to position yourself in one spot and anticipate where your subject will be moving through—and either focus on a test subject at that location, or focus on the floor where your subject is expected to move by. Practice, practice, practice. And if you are still having trouble getting your subject in focus, try adjusting your aperture, and shoot at f/4.0 or f/5.6 instead.

📷 on #ilford100 with a #pentax645nii at Lowndes Grove in Charleston South Carolina.

Don’t be afraid of trying new things that are out of the norm. For this bridal inspiration shoot, @kalebnormanjames wanted to try a floral bridal hat, and I am glad we did. It was such a great success!

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii in Seattle, Washington.

We all have those people we look up to and seek advice from, particularly in the beginning stages of our careers. I really believe I wouldn’t be the artist or entrepreneur I am today if it wasn’t for all of the amazing people who have poured into me since I began my journey as a photographer. This is why I am very excited to get the opportunity to pour into other photographers.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at Monet Vineyards in Brush Prairie, Washington.

Many people have asked me what photo subjects I have struggled to master. If I had to pick, it would be flat layouts. I always struggled during weddings because I wanted everything to be perfectly straight (due to my engineering background), and I would take a very long time to get it “just right.” I am not an expert by any means, but I feel that I can now confidently style any details or invitation suites at weddings. My secret was to compile a handful of styling items in a bag and practice at home. I now take this bag with me to every wedding, so I know exactly what I have to work with and how it all looks together. Now I can style beautiful flat layouts effortlessly. Give it a try.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii in Columbia River Gorge Hotel in Hood River, Oregon.

The biggest advice I could give any photographer is to always be true to yourself and photograph in your own style. Learn from other photographers and be inspired, but find your own niche. The world doesn’t need the same photographer over and over, the world needs you.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at Monet Vineyards in Brush Praire, Washington.

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It was a pleasure hosting a PV Takeover  and connecting with all of you these past few days. I have to say thank you to @photovisionprints for the opportunity and for being the only #filmlab I use. I meant it when I said that if you find yourself in the #PNW, you should reach out. @athinahernandez and I would love to show you around this little paradise and maybe even visit #photovisionprints’ lab!

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii in Columbia River Gorge, Oregon.

 

Jenny Losee

PhotoVision Team

Heyooo, fellow photographers! My name is @jennylosee_, I have been a #filmphotographer for about 3 years and I’ll tell you what, it has been a rollercoaster. First off, film is better. Glad we got that out of the way. Second, I am not a fan of talking about myself. In real life, someone asks about my world and I will give them the fastest answer possible and move on so this might get a bit bumpy. Hang in there with me. 
 
I grew up in Pocatello. A small town in Idaho most people haven’t heard of, where everyone around me seemed so content to never leave or move. While there is nothing wrong with that, it made me want to travel and see everything! So after high school, I was lucky enough to see some places all over the world. I fell in love with these new places and the people I met along the way. I moved to Boise a few years later with my husband, where we have a cozy little home in the farmland with our cat, Figaro, and silver lab, Frank, surrounded by chickens, goats and cows. 
 
About 7 years ago, I picked up a digital camera. I took my brother’s senior photos, then his friends asked me to do their photos, then their families asked me and it just snowballed. Eventually I learned it was time for me to really dive into this art form. I self-taught as much as I possibly could with some workshops here and there. At one workshop, they shot film—which seemed so legit, scary and out of the question for me. That was until I shot a roll of film myself, and that is when the obsession began. I got my first roll back and fell IN LOVE with the colors, the texture and that buttery light. And from there my goal was born, I would travel the #PNW and beyond documenting weddings, getting published and turning this passion of mine into a career. 
 
📷 by @marialamb with a #contax645.

Photography as a Career // I’m sure I’m not the only one whose parents told me I would never make money with art, but I didn't listen or care. Nothing could stop me from filling that passion to create! It is the juice of life for me, I need it to be a #happyhuman. I know in the Winter season—my off months—I seriously get cranky and nothing can turn my attitude around like a good ol’ photo session. It is such a scary, ever-changing, exciting, unpredictable thing to have your own photography business. Mixing art with making money?! I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy, lol! But I still love it. Sometimes, I feel unstoppable. Other times, I think “maybe I should have thought of a plan B.” But then something great happens and the cycle continues. Inspired, terrified, passionate, broke, hustle. Rinse, repeat. 

📷 on #portra400 with a #nikonf100 in Carmel-by-the-sea, California.

Photography as a Passion // Photography was a career that kind of fell into my lap, I never really knew what I wanted to do growing up like most kids. I knew I liked to create, tell wild stories and see new things. I get VERY bored of routine and predictable moments, which is probably why photography works so well for me. I am so excited for the next adventure and to live this wild dream of mine! 
 
📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Palm Springs, California.

Light // I am so inspired and moved by all things nature. Put me on a beach, in the middle of the forest or even just rolling hills on a sunny day and I totally geek out EVERY. TIME. The sun is a tool and a prop in my work. I would shoot with it every time if I could. It romanticizes a scene and can create  amazing flares, shadows and a whimsical feel. I’m sure clients think I’m nuts for being excited about a little “golden hour light,” but if you are a photographer and you study light, you get it! That’s what photographers are anyway, right? Drawers of the light. 

📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Boise, Idaho.

Know Your Clients // Researching my clients, does wonders! Just seeing their Facebook page and what pictures they use for their profile, what do they have a lot of images of or what would I like to see more of. Knowing my clients’ hobbies and interests plays a big roll in the direction I take their photoshoot—poses, placement, actions, etc.  Photoshoots and weddings happen so fast, you don’t have time to figure out who your clients are on the spot. I don’t really like talking during a photo session either, I am at my best when I can give some direction, then step back and become more of an observer. I like to play some music, too, it helps my clients feel more comfortable and forget about the camera. 
 
📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Portland, Oregon.

In the Moment // This photo was one of those days where the stars aligned, the sun was giving me life and I was unbelievably inspired by the beautiful #OregonCoast. Shooting requires time to slow down, to stop and see reflections, textures, perfect light and subtle breezes. It is somewhat of a spiritual experience for me. Cheaper than therapy and I have something to show for it. When I shoot, I am in the moment. No past or future in my mind, purely in the now.
 
📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Cannon Beach, Oregon.

Art // Black + whites with motion, blur and double exposures are so interesting to me. They tell a story with emotion. The great thing about double exposures is, you never know what you are going to get. I know that I am drawn to simple images and it can get pretty busy if you are doing double or triple exposures. So, I like to just use shapes and textures, move in close then one far and see what happens! 
 
📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Studio.

Location // I prefer to shoot on location vs in studio. Location has a story, unpredictable light and weather. For this reason, I always travel light. If it can’t fit in a backpack to be carried up a mountain, or stuffed in an overhead bin, it isn’t coming. So I have made it a habit at weddings, elopements, and engagements to only shoot with 3 cameras, film of course, a 80mm lens, 50mm, 24-70mm and a flash. I also learned the hard way and now, FINALLY, have an umbrella and gloves :) 
 
📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Loving What You Got // This shoot was styled to be a Fall mountain shoot, but it snowed all morning and you can’t even see the Grand Tetons in the background. So it wasn’t what I had planned at all, but I love this photo series. 
 
📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Jackson Hole, Wyoming.

Adventure // I crave adventure, open spaces and nature (Sagittarius syndrome!). I typically attract nature-inspired brides as well, which brings us together in the most perfect way. My bride is usually down to hike up a mountain, change into her dress in the middle of the woods and isn't afraid of a little dirt. It's a new adventure everyday. I love that.
 
📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Boise, Idaho.

Timeless // This was one of the very first film shoots I did. Of course it was an editorial shoot. I just love coming back to this image because it reminds me of that time when film was new in my world, a new way of making art. I didn't know if it was going to turn out. Then those two weeks of waiting time . . . haha, torture, but oh so worth it. When I finally saw the images in my inbox, I was so excited to post them, share them and just learn more about this format. I wanted to shoot more! Now, when I look back at this image, it reminds me that film is timeless, I can always come back to this shoot and it won't be out of style. 
 
📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in McCall, Idaho.

Learning // It is so important for me to always be absorbing new info, creating things that surprise me, adjusting my workflow or routine, and to be inspired! Creating art is really for the artist. Yes, the client gets the benefits of course, but let’s be real. CREATING FEEDS OUR SOULS we are made to learn! That is why classes, books, guides, tutorials . . . everything is so important! 

*Mentor critique sessions are available!* Just starting out or want to learn a bit more about #filmphotography? Unsure about why your work isn’t clicking with your dream clients? Want feedback on your work and branding? Then this mentor critique is for you. Get a fresh perspective that will help your images improve and your portfolio to reflect the images you want potential clients to see! Inquire to ask more and what mentor package will fit your needs best. 
 
Thank you for following along this week, if you have any questions or just want to say “hey,” please do!! I love meeting people in this world. THANK YOU!! 

📷 on #portra400 with a #contax645 in Zion National Park.

Greer Gattuso

PhotoVision Team

Hello, beautiful people! @greergattuso here, and I am so excited to spend the next few days with you all diving into a bit of my personal journey and all things film! I have always been drawn to documenting and sharing stories through imagery. I remember looking back at my parent’s wedding album—seeing them young and in love, my grandparents there, everyone in celebration over two families coming together. I felt nostalgic, wishing I could be with them and, in a way, feeling like I was. Some of the photographs were taken in the house I live in now. I attend the church where they were married. Their images allow me to relive their day with them. They bring the earliest part of their relationship to life and remind me why I do what I do in the first place. Every relationship carries its own essence. My work is to create a place where people can be honest together—to engage meaningfully in a space they feel comfortable in and capture images they can hold for years to come. I look to capture images that bear witness to the beauty of real life.

📷 on #ilford3200 with a #contax645 in Louisiana.

I bought my first #filmcamera in college while studying photojournalism. To be completely honest, it did not feel natural at first! Learning exposures, bracketing and lighting was HARD, it all felt so foreign to me, and I knew it was going to take some time to learn my equipment and use it seamlessly. But I slowly became more confident in my exposures and lighting. As I practiced shooting and spent more and more time in the darkroom, it eventually became second nature. Learning photography on a film camera with no digital safety net forced me to pay attention to my shutter, aperture and film speed. I learned how these three crucial elements work together to create an ideal exposure.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #contax645 at Longue Vue House & Gardens in New Orleans, Louisiana.

While studying photojournalism at Loyola University, I was able to study all the greats—Henri Cartier-Bresson, Dorothea Lange, Walker Evans, Margaret Bourke-White, etc. I loved seeing how these incredible photographers told stories and I quickly gravitated toward documentary photography. I shot all film at the time and practically lived in the darkroom. It was then I fell in love with B+W photography, it is rich and timeless and filled with life. I knew I was right where I was supposed to be.

📷 on #ilford3200 with a #contax645 at Longue Vue House & Gardens in New Orleans, Louisiana.

After graduating college, I began working for “The Palm Beach Daily News” as a photojournalist. I documented #NYFW and Milan Fashion Week, along with traveling to Bolivia to cover medical missions. All on film! I was granted unlimited access to the paper’s darkroom. AND, get this, they even supplied ALL MY FILM. This is not a joke. I did not know how lucky I was to have a closet full of film at my fingertips just waiting to be exposed. That just doesn’t happen anymore, film is no longer found in newsrooms and darkrooms have been turned into storage closets across the country. These experiences fueled my passion for photography that documents the stories of real life.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #contax645 in Havana, Cuba.

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As my career at the newspaper began to slow down, I started photographing weddings—just for friends. And during that time, the paper was switching to digital, and they paid for ALL the equipment, so I made that transition right along with them. Photographing weddings felt like a natural fit for me. I went from shooting for an article—making sure my images matched the reporter’s writing—to using my creative eye. I loved the fast-pace environment of a wedding, and its high energy filled with love. I entered the wedding industry in the middle of a shift. The community had mostly been filled with male photographers. Female photographers were just starting to break the surface, becoming more and more common. I began to notice a shift from wedding days ran by a shot list, to one driven to capture the story at hand—from the details of “getting ready” to capturing the “grand getaway”—in a romantic, feminine way that presented a richer story.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #contax645 at Longue Vue House & Gardens in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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I remember when I first learned about the digital camera. I was still working at The Palm Beach Daily News when a fashion photographer approached me in New York with a brand new Kodak digital camera and said, “Greer you need to look at this, it’s going to be big!” I just thought he was crazy, the images looked pixely and felt so different, but sure enough digital cameras changed the game. I put my film camera away for awhile and shot strictly digital. Looking back on those years, I realize digital was never able to produce the the same type of imagery and feeling that film created. The way film produces color and interprets light is incredible and something I could never recreate with digital. Going back to film was like returning home.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #contax645 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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After shooting digital for years, I returned home to film and bought a Contax645. To be completely honest, I went through a bit of a rough period at first. I had been investing in workshops looking to expand my knowledge of film and photography, but was unable to produce the same look I had in the years before. The images were hazy and muddy, and not what I had been expecting. I later learned, while attending another workshop, that my camera had fungus in the lens! Once I realized that the issue wasn’t me or my shooting, but an internal camera issue, I was able to get my confidence back and dove straight into the #filmphotography world! I continued taking workshops, practiced, practiced, practiced and called @photovisionprints with ALL of my questions! This community we work in is amazing and filled with so many resources. Continue to reach out to one another and don’t be afraid to ask questions!

📷 on #fuji400h with a #contax645 in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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Looking back on my photography journey, it is easy to see how my style and work have changed over the years. When I see my film photography, I see more of me in my work. As I gaze at images shot on film, there is a certain romantic and feminine quality that I love. I strive for classic and timeless images ALWAYS. I studied great photographers whose work will live forever, and that is what I want to create for my clients.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #contax645 in Catskills, New York.

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Having clients choose me to be a part of their day and having faith in me to document it, is a huge honor! When entering a wedding day, I ultimately want my clients to be happy. Hearing what they want out of their images and their big day is crucial. The bride in this particular shot had told me she wanted her wedding featured in @Vogue_wedding . . . talk about pressure! Though this was my bride’s goal, I did not enter her wedding day as if it were for a publication. I just gave it my all, 100% and focused on the task at hand—capturing timeless images for this couple that will live forever. So when #VogueMagazine did pick up this wedding later on, I was thrilled! I’m always striving for publications on a personal level, but ultimately, if my clients are happy, I’m happy.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #contax645 at Longue Vue House & Gardens in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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One of my life’s biggest accomplishments was setting a certain goal for myself and achieving it. My husband and I moved to New Orleans in January, 2010 with a 10-week-old baby girl and lived out of suitcases in my parent’s house, as we renovated my grandparent’s home to move into. One day I was sitting in my mom’s kitchen with my laptop and simply decided, “I am going to start a business.” I didn’t know how I was going to make it work, but I just knew it was what I needed to do. “I’m going to be a top photographer.” That’s what I kept saying to myself over and over again. Then I worked, really hard—really, really hard—and made it happen.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #contax645 at Race and Religious in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Amanda K

PhotoVision Team

Hello, Hello! Oh my goodness, you guys!! @amandakphotoart here, and I am just over-the-moon grateful to have been invited to share a little bit of my journey with you this week! THANK you @photovisionprints for inviting me on for the next few days. 🙌 I will admit I am a bit nervous, as I don’t want to be superficial in my content, but to really give you a glimpse into who I am. "Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen." — Brené Brown

My unexpected journey to becoming an entrepreneur and wedding photographer started 16 years ago when I lost the love of my life in a tragic accident. I was 28 years old with 3 young children, and as you can imagine, my entire world was turned upside down. Through the process of preparing for his memorial service, I had to go through two huge boxes of photos I had printed throughout our marriage of him and our children together. Those prints became the only tangible memories my children would ever have of their Dad, and the photograph took on an entirely new meaning for me. The camera became a tool of healing for me—it was like oxygen when I felt I couldn't breathe. All I wanted to do was capture and celebrate LIFE. I never considered myself "artistic" or even talented in any way, I was in the nursing field, but it's amazing how things can change when you love something that much. Long story short, photography evolved into something special, and something I never could have imagined. Photographing couples in love is my beauty from ashes. I am now celebrating my 10th year in business, and I am overwhelmed with gratitude to be doing what I do. It has not been an easy road by any means, but I can honestly say I know this is where I am meant to be. 😊

📷 by @betsyblue on #fuji400h with a #contax645 in Portland, Oregon.

 

V I R T U E S. I strive to use "Virtue" as a model in my business practice. The virtues I am going to share with you in the next few days are the driving force in how I shoot, interact with my clients and run my business. I fail on the daily—believe me. In my 10+ years as an entrepreneur, I have learned that failure and rejection have been my biggest motivators! My hope during our time together is that you will find me and my words relatable, that you will leave feeling encouraged and inspired. I am so grateful to be a part of this photography community! 😘📷

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at #thecorsonbuilding in Seattle, Washington. As seen on @magnoliarouge.

 

J O Y F U L N E S S.  There is no greater honor for me, as a photographer, than to be invited into a couple's "circle of trust." To be surrounded by their dearest friends and closest family, to be entrusted with documenting the true essence of those relationships is HUGE. A wedding is one of the biggest events a couple will experience and plan together, and the joy I bring to the table is vital to the overall experience they have with me. I want my clients to feel my excitement and positive energy! Brides can be incredibly nervous, I use my mom skills at times to help calm them. 😉 Believe me, there are days when I have to dig down deep for that great attitude and energy, but your client experience is EVERYTHING.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at #ranchosoldelpacifico in Malibu, California.

 

A U T H E N T I C I T Y. When I first started photographing couples, portraits and weddings, I would rely heavily on inspiration from fashion magazines—Ralph Lauren spreads in @vogue! 😍🔥 I studied how they were "perfectly" posed, and while it absolutely helped me gain some skills, I noticed my work was lacking something . . . authentic and honest emotion. Sure, there were a lot of beautiful, regal images, but was my work evoking a FEELING in my viewers/clients? Were my clients recognizing themselves? That next season, I completely changed my approach. I stopped looking for inspiration in other photography, and started capturing what I saw in front of me, and not what I had seen in magazines. It's easy to get caught up in the validation of likes and followers on social media, but we have to remember, we are shooting for our clients, not a publication or applause. It's so important to connect with your subject!  

📷 on #Portra400 with a #hasselbladh1 in Cannon Beach, Oregon.

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P A T I E N C E. Guys, we all know we live in a society of instant gratification. The most difficult part of transitioning back to film was shooting "blind" and not being able to rely on that little screen on the back of my camera. Who can relate?! 🙋 However, the hidden lesson and blessing in shooting film is not only practicing patience, but also sharing that experience with your clients. With that patience, also comes trust. Trusting yourself when shooting, trusting your lab and ultimately building your clients’ trust in you—it's a beautiful thing! It's a wonderful opportunity to share in the anticipation of scans with your clients and celebrate together when those beautiful images arrive in your inbox.

 📷 on #fuji400h with a #hasselbladh1 at #sunstonewinery in Santa Ynez, California.

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P E R S E V E R A N C E. Growing up around a camera, I was familiar with film and loved the process. I shot on film until the late ‘90s when the digital and Photoshop craze happened! I learned everything I could about editing and shooting with all those complicated buttons. When I look back at some of those over-processed photos now, I literally cringe. 🤢 I am so thrilled to see the complete comeback that film has made! However, it has been yet another learning curve for me. As many photographers have mentioned, the best way to learn is to start incorporating film into your workflow slowly. I made a goal to shoot 3 rolls of film at every wedding.  From there, I started shooting only film at my engagement sessions! I found this was the best way to build my confidence! I can be a bit stubborn, (and shy),  and am not the best at asking questions, so I have failed, many times! Ultimately, it's about persevering,  practice, and always educating yourself! Lastly, I can't stress enough how important it is to take advantage of @PhotoVisionprints’s EXCELLENT customer service. They want you to succeed as much as you do!

📷 on #Portra800 with a #pentax645nii in Franklin, Tennessee. As seen in @southernweddings Magazine.

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H O N E S T Y.  Ok, I have an earth-shaking revelation for you. I don't personally "love" styled shoots. Who else is with me?? Now, I absolutely adore working with other creatives and I agree it's vital to my growth as an artist to create personal work. It can be very refreshing and soul inspiring, It’s also a great way to network with other like minded creatives in the industry! However, in my humble opinion, if my goal is to attract more wedding clients, then I feel it's incredibly important to show my viewers, (and hopefully potential clients!), more content from real weddings. Being honest in what I share helps my clients have realistic expectations of what I can deliver! We all know that working a real-life wedding with tight timelines and sometimes crazy weather is a true test of our creative skills!  I have also made it my mission when mentoring,  to only ask real couples to model when teaching 1:1s.  It’s so important that my attendee’s  see how I work with, pose and draw out honest emotions from true couples. I LOVE sharing time with other photographers at these sessions and I always encourage them to focus less on those styled shoots and getting published and more on their craft and their client! 👊

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii in Ashland, Oregon From a 1:1 with @annabelmayphotoart.

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H U M I L I T Y.  If you only receive one bit of advice from me during this #pvtakeover, let it be this: If we don't receive critique on our work, or from our clients’ experiences, we will not GROW. As photographers, we are so fortunate to have social media platforms to get our work seen and, let's be honest, we LOVE that positive feedback!! But if all we ever hear is applause, then we aren't going to push ourselves to greater levels! If you haven't already, I encourage you to join a photography (film or otherwise) group through Facebook, etc. Some of these threads can be invaluable to your growth as a photographer! It's such a great way to share in your triumphs and struggles. In regards to your business, I can't express enough the importance of asking for feedback from your clients! Asking them how you could have improved their experience or if there were areas of their day that they wish you had focused more of your time on. These  conversations really make all the difference in personal and professional growth. If anyone would like to be invited into a photography group, or has one they would like to share, please comment below!! Also, if you have ANY specific questions for me regarding the business, gear, technique, ANYTHING, please ask away! I am an open book. 😊

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii in Berkeley California. As seen in @magnoliarouge issue

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L O V E.  I am in the business of love. How great is that?! I wholeheartedly adore my job, and am committed to being a light and encouragement to not only my clients, but other creatives in this industry. There is nothing more exciting to me than to receive those emails from couples inquiring about their big day! Connecting with them on a deeper level and learning about their love story is integral to the direction I take with their wedding day and engagement portraits. While giving direction is important, I never want to force anything, but allow the moments to present themselves to me naturally and truthfully. When you have a couple who is over the moon in love in front of your lens, that is all the inspiration you need. Love is the theme I want to be present in all of my work.

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at client's family farm in Crescent City, California.

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S I M P L I C I T Y. I am a “less is more” kind of girl. I believe in quality over quantity, and that is how I like to approach my weddings and portraits. Whether I am shooting film or digital, I try to shoot with intent. I want each frame to be a keeper!! (That doesn’t always happen BTW.) This also saves me from hours of culling! In the beginning of my career, I would arrive to a wedding with a long list of my "must have" shots, 4 cameras, 6+ lenses and so on. I have since learned to completely simplify, and that was a game changer! One of my favorite things about shooting with my Pentax645Nii, is the simplicity of it. All I have on me during engagements and the couple's wedding day portraits, is my Sekonic handheld meter, and my film camera with one lens. This allows me to really be in the zone without being distracted by all the gear hanging off of me like a pack mule! I am also very nature inspired—I love to use the natural beauty of the environment to frame my subjects. A clean, simple background is EVERYTHING. A great example of this was a recent HMUA editorial I shot for @austieeckley. I brought one film camera, had my digital for a backup (always be prepared!), two lenses, and film. We went into this shoot with some ideas and inspiration, but ultimately we wanted a very minimal aesthetic so that the make-up was the star. Tiffany of @foragedfloral brought all these incredible blooms as inspiration, and I had her sprinkle Courtney’s curly locks with these little blossoms. They added softness and femininity to the image without distracting from the subject. Simplicity at it’s finest. I absolutely LOVE how it turned out! 
 
📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at @studio_1904 in Portland, Oregon.

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G R A T I T U D E. I wanted to finish out my #pvtakeover with the virtue I hold dearest to my heart. I believe making it a habit to express thankfulness is always the best way to cultivate great relationships and gain opportunities. None of us have made it to where we are in life and in business without the help of someone along the way. I highly encourage you to take the time everyday to thank someone who has helped you in your photography journey, especially if they don't even realize they have encouraged you! Make sure your clients know how grateful you are that they chose YOU to photograph their life and love! You could even have a thank you card waiting for the UPS guy who is at your house every week with a box of film! Small gestures of gratitude go a LONG way. 🙂  Lastly, I am incredibly thankful to @photovisionprints for having me this week! Thank you for giving me the "stage," so to speak, to share a bit of my journey and my work with your amazing friends. And to all who have been following along, thank you from the bottom of my heart. XO 😘  

If you are interested in continuing to follow along on my journey head on over to @amandakphotoart! AND to express my gratitude I am hosting an exciting #giveaway! Check out my latest post to learn how to enter!

📷 on #fuji400h with a #pentax645nii at #sanysidroranch in Santa Barbara, California. As seen on @inspiredbythis and nominated for @bellelumieremagazine 2016 image of the year.

Nicole Colwell

PhotoVision Team

Everyone has to start somewhere! Ok, embarrassing story . . . being a photographer kind of just happened for me. I didn’t know that this is what I wanted when I was 12 like other amazing photographers. Truth be told, when I got married, I fell in love with the photography part of the day—I felt a spark. So I took our gift money, headed to our local BestBuy and purchased a $400 Nikon D3100 and my business began. I booked my first wedding a week later after I shot my friend’s kids at a park, with no second shooting experience—well, no experience at all. I shot this couple’s wedding on a cropped-frame sensor, in auto, with a kit lens and are you ready . . . I edited their entire gallery on PHOTOBUCKET! My couple LOVED their wedding images. They recommended me to everyone they knew and I booked 19 weddings off of that one wedding alone. I went on to buy a full-frame camera, learned how to shoot in manual from the best teacher in the world—YouTube—and kissed PicMonkey + Photobucket goodbye. That spark turned into a flame, and once I found film, it burst into a wildfire. So, here is this nobody who taught herself all she knows who wanted to shoot film! I had so much  fear, doubt and thought that because I had no background in photography, I wasn’t good enough. What a bunch of poop! I finally said, what the heck, and bought a #NikonF6, then upgraded to the #Pentax645 and eventually ended up with a #Contax645. 📷 If you want to shoot film, DO IT! The only obstacle keeping you from doing something you love is yourself. I found my brand, my style and myself as a photographer because of film. Take a chance, you will surprise yourself!!! I know I did!

Getting rid of the safety net. Show of hands—does the idea of shooting only film give you the heebie jeebies? Leaving my digital camera behind was a major struggle in my film journey. I was using it as a safety net. And you know what? It was actually doing me more harm than good. Having my digital camera on me was a huge distraction and didn’t allow me to be fully present at my shoots. Once I left my digital camera behind, it was like the chains broke free and I could really connect with my clients. I started out slow—shooting only film at my editorials and eventually adding it into portrait sessions. Once I was confident in my film photography, I began utilizing it at weddings, first just documenting the details on film, and gradually adding more and more film shots into my work flow.

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Virginia.

Would you hire yourself? When starting your own business, it is easy to be, well, a bit all over the place when trying to find your style. I remember shooting one session and editing every picture differently—one image was really vibrant, another desaturated. I was having fun and thought that I was being versatile, but in reality, I was not attracting my ideal clients or *any* clients for that matter. And I asked myself, “Would I hire myself?” My answer was a big fat NO. I was having a really hard time finding my style, until I saw an image that made me gasp. I loved its “light and airy” feel, and it had that awesome painterly effect. I knew right away that I wanted my work to look like that! Low and behold, I found out it was a film image, and in that moment, I found my style and brand. Staying consistent is key. Whether you are “light and airy” or more moody, you need to stick with that look. Don’t confuse your potential clients. Show them what look they will receive. Don’t leave them wondering.

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Virginia.

Will work for Love Stories! When you look at your work, what is the first word that comes to your mind? For me, it was “romantic.” I knew I wanted my images to scream romance—I adore those intimate, tender shots and tend to produce those types of images. I am not a traditional “look at me and smile” photographer. Though I still document traditional portraits for my couples, I want to make them feel the romance when they look at these images and not just see a pretty photo. Film has helped me achieve that romantic look I wanted. It has helped me be more intimate, to slow down and connect with my couples, so I can capture them in that perfect moment. ❤

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Virginia.

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More than just a photograph! I never had the pleasure of meeting my Grandmother—she passed away before I was born. I remember as a little girl looking at these black and white photographs adorned in beautiful antique silver frames. The image I was drawn to the most was of my beautiful dark-haired Grandmother on her wedding day. I would stare at her and wonder what she was like, if I favored her or if we had similar traits. I would let the stories I heard about her play in my mind like a movie—one where she was alive and I knew her. This image means so much to me, it is more than just a photograph. These photographs are my visual heirlooms—and they inspire me to create authentic, timeless images for my couples. I don’t want to be “just a photographer” to my clients, I want to preserve their memories, tell their stories and keep them alive—who knows who will be staring at these images in the years to come!  

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Let’s be real! Who out there loves photographing styled shoots? 🙋 I love styled shoots and I would shoot one almost everyday—if I wouldn’t go bankrupt. Styled shoots are amazing! They have led me to  meet so many amazing creatives that I would have never met otherwise. They allow me to be creative, to grow and to push myself to be a better photographer. When documenting a wedding, it can often feel like a styled shoot, but we have to remember, this is a real wedding, and the skills you use during a styled shoot can easily be applied. I love to use a photojournalistic style to document a wedding’s details and add that editorial touch—however, I must keep it real.😎 I am hired to capture couple’s stories, their unguarded moments and their real emotions.

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Virginia.

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Shoot To Tell A Story: We all know the saying “less is more.” Well, it rings true for me. When I first started out, I would add so many styling details—I would spend 30 minutes on ring shots alone, or make my couples walk miles and miles at their venue for all these different locations. By the end of the day I would end up losing what was important . . . their story. When you arrive on the wedding day, you should know your couple’s story. Before I hit the shutter, I always ask myself, “Does this tell their story? Does this make sense?” Film has truly helped me to slow down, to take more time to ask these questions, preventing me from becoming trigger happy and forcing me to be intentional with every frame. I may photograph less throughout the day, but I deliver quality over quantity and my couple’s images tell their story and flow beautifully.

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Maui, Hawaii.

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Being Frugal . . . I mean, a Hybrid Photographer. Roses are red, Violets are blue, Film is expensive, You know it’s true. I had to learn the hard way to be frugal with my film. When your friends from PV call you saying they couldn’t process your order because your card was declined, well, that's when you realize you're not getting paid to shoot film, you're paying your clients for your addiction. Film is my addiction, and a little piece of me dies inside if I can’t shoot it—however, I can’t afford to be a “film-only photographer.” I am so jelly of you who can, but for me, being a hybrid photographer works best for my business at this time, and that’s okay! On the wedding day, I photograph the details, getting ready and formals strictly on film. I photograph one roll during the ceremony for my social media outlets—plus it helps me match my digital images to my scans. And I will only shoot film at the reception if light allows it. Being a hybrid photographer is more cost-efficient, plus the challenges of the wedding day weather and light may rule out film all together.

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Savannah, Georgia.

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It Takes Two to Tango . . . “Whatever she wants.” I hear these 3 words way too much on a wedding day. Yes, I want to make my bride as happy as possible, I want to make her feel special and let her know it’s her day. However, she isn't marrying herself! Don’t forget about your groom. The Groom’s details and portraits are some of my all-time favorite shots. I love seeing what little details he may have, details that would not have been documented if I hadn't requested an extra 15 minutes on the timeline for these simple shots that are always a crowd pleaser. 🤵

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Virginia.

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The Green-Eyed Monster One of my biggest struggles was comparing myself to other film photographers. I know I am not the only one in this industry who has to fight that Green-Eyed Monster on a regular basis. Social media is a blessing and a curse. It’s so easy to get sucked in by another photographer's success and question your own self worth simply by viewing their feed. The “I wants” and the “I wishes” take over, and then sadness and defeat creep in, making you want to just give up, because you think there is no way you could ever be as good as them. Stop this negative way of thinking! Overcome your fear and doubt and focus on your victories instead of your failures! 👍

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Tenessee.

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Overcoming the Green-Eyed Monster Once I stopped comparing myself to other wedding photographers, and focused on why it was I wanted to be a wedding photographer in the first place, I overcame the Green-Eyed Monster and my business began to thrive. Once I did this, I realized that while my success may not be like others’, it is my own, and I am successful. I may be a small fish in a big pond, but I am able to do what I love full time—pay my bills, travel and be my own boss. Just remember, there is always going to be someone better than you! Allow others to inspire you, but don’t compare yourself to them. And remember to “just keep swimming!” 🐟

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in New York.

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Always Stay Humble + Kind Being a creative and your own boss can, at times, be very lonely. When I first started my business, I remember reaching out to other photographers for help or advice. But often times, I wouldn’t even get a response, and if I did, the photographer was cold to me. Because of this, I choose to stay out of most photography groups because I found other professionals making fun of new and seasoned photographers. I felt like I was back in high school, hoping to sit with the cool kids during lunch. So I kept searching until I found like-minded creatives who build me up, instead of tearing me down. These awesome relationships led me to start mentoring and hosting workshops, because I wanted to create safe spaces for photographers to grow together in this industry. I love helping others so they can learn from my past mistakes. If you're interested in attending one of my future workshops, PV is a regular sponsor—follow me @nicolecolwellphotography for upcoming dates.

I hope you all enjoyed following along this week! Remember, you are unique and your photography is unique. There is no one like you! 😘

📷 on Fuji400H through a Contax645 in Maui, Hawaii.

Orange Photographie + PV Takeover + Day 1

Stephen Wood

Hi, friends! Samantha and Reid here of @orangephotographie! We’re incredibly honored to be doing a #pvtakeover for the next few days. As photographers, it’s easy to get on the jealousy train and wish you had what other photographers have to work with, whether that’s locations, florists, stylists, models, gear . . . you name it. It’s easy to think that if you only had (fill in the blank), you would be happy and successful. But that idea is a lie and such a thief of happiness. Until you start embracing what you have to work with and making the most of it, you’ll always be wishing you were somewhere else, shooting something else and feeling inadequate. We live in Montana, a location most people would KILL to shoot, but we hadn’t fully embraced its awesomeness until recently. In the past, we’ve always been drawn to classic locations and styles and it frustrated me (Samantha) that I lived in a place that didn't reflect my own personal tastes. But one day, I realized I needed to stop fighting the innate wildness of Montana and embrace it. So, we've been on a mission to do that lately. Rock what you’ve got. This was shot on a Nikon F100 35mm with a Nikon 50mm lens using Fuji 400H . . . proving you don’t need a Contax 645 to get “the shot.” 

#orangephotographiesvision #pvtakeover #nikonf100 #fuji400h #bigskymontana #photovisionprints #sp3000 #fujifilm @fujifilm_northamerica

@orangephotographie Takeover Day 1:  This image is from one of the first weddings we shot on film, and it remains one of our favorite images we’ve ever taken. We love the intimacy that comes with getting up close and personal with your camera, and the visually interesting composition that can be created as a result. But mostly, we love the peaceful look on the faces of these newlyweds and how it encapsulates how the entire day felt. 

#orangephotographiesvision #pvtakeover #contax645 #fuji400h #whitefishmontana #photovisionprints #sp3000 #fujifilm @fujifilm_northamerica