On this episode, I’m sharing an interview with Michelle Gardella. Michelle is a wife, mother, photographer and teacher. Michelle is known for her River Stories – stunning photos of women in rivers. I talked to Michelle last year on TWiP Family. We talked about the beginnings of her River Stories on that show.
Michelle teaches a class through the Define School titled, Foundations of Black and White. On this episode, we talk about her class, teaching and black and white. Michelle also shares her thoughts about social media and bringing people together to support one another. Michelle also shares what she asked Maya Angelou when she met her. Enjoy the show.
Today on the show, I’m sharing my conversation with Summer Murdock. Summer is a photographer, teacher and mother of four. Along with Jennifer Tonetti Spellman, she launched the online photography school – Illuminate. She teaches a wildly popular class several times a year titled, The Magic of Light.
Light is what today’s show is all about. Summer talks about making great family photos in any kind of light. She says – if your mind is telling you to leave the camera at home because the light isn’t good – question that. We talk about how she learned to embrace bright mid day sun as well as her abiding love for the light in the last hour of the day – golden hour.
We do our best to talk about how to make great backlit images – there are some things that are hard to describe and follow in an all audio format. Summer also talks about why she continues to love taking daily photos and how it has made her a stronger photographer and her recent experimentation with Drones.
I hope you enjoy is interview with Summer Murdock.
This week’s guest is Ashleigh Raddatz. She is a family documentary photographer and mother of two young boys. Ash talks about her personal project, Always August, about her son who is on the autism spectrum. She photographs his rituals, good times and hard times too.
Along with her friend, Lia Edwards, Ashleigh has recently launched a website, Documentary Family Photographers. The aim of their website is to help families looking for documentary style photography find photographers who specialize in documentary. They also want the site to help documentary family photographers learn from each other. Ash and Lia are offering listeners to the podcast 20% off with the code famphoto20. You can sample the conversations photographers are having by joining the Facebook group. Long time listeners will find familiar faces there. Kirsten Lewis, Zalmy Berkowitz, Davina Fear, and Francesca Russell are all members of the group.
When Tara had three small children, her husband bought her a camera and said, “You’ve got to do something for yourself.” (What a guy.) Tara started sharing her photos on a blog for her family. The blog grew and people asked her if she’d photograph their families the way she photographed her own. I ask Tara how she felt then and feels now about sharing photos of her kids online. She talks about what precautions she has taken, and how sharing about her family has changed as the kids have gotten older.
We talk about why Tara enjoys using film and what it was like having Jon Canlas photograph her family. (Jon talked about photographing Tara’s family on episode 13 of TWiP Family.) We talk about the fine line between being inspired when looking at other photographers’ work and feeling discouraged by comparison. And we talk about the times when the emotion of a photo trumps technical perfection.
On this episode, I talk with Lauren Lim of Photography Concentrate about how to shoot awesome video. Shooting video is more complicated than taking still photos of our family. Why should you bother? Lauren tells us what is special about video and why it’s worth the trouble. We talk about some of the technical considerations of video and why it’s not as hard as you think.
Lauren and Rob have created a thorough and unintimidating tutorial all about Shooting Awesome Video. If you’d like to win the tutorial, leave a comment. A winner will be chosen randomly from the comments on March 7.
Join other Family Photographer listeners in a 365 project on Flickr or Facebook.
Be sure to sign up for weekly emails about the podcast and to see iPhone photos my kids take.
The show is coming out every other week for the time being. There’s a new baby in the house. We’re settling in – a lot of napping, nursing and admiring her soft little feet.
Today’s guest, Erin Brant, makes family photos that are both joyful and honest. She writes on her website, “If you’re looking for perfect family photos (meticulously coordinated outfits, everyone lined up smiling directly into the camera), you’ve probably come to wrong place. If you’re looking to have a really good time and make photos that show your real love and real life…I just might be the photographer for you!!”
In our conversation, Erin tells us about her former photography teacher who saw her photos of her kids and said, “What camera are you using?” When she told him, “My phone.” He said, “I have a camera you can use.”
Erin quickly learned more about photography and soon was being asked by family and friends to take photos for them. In no time, she was in business. These days, she’s based in sunny San Diego.
I loved talking to Erin for the show. Her enthusiasm for family and photography is infectious.
Right now, Erin is working on a course that will be available in May in the Click Photo School titled, “The Happy Now.”
As always, I love hearing from you. If you have a photography question, a guest suggestion, comment about this episode or something else is on your mind, simply reply to this email. It will pop right into my inbox. (I can’t promise my responses will be as quick but I will get back to you.)
The Family Photographer podcast is going to come out every other week for now. We’re welcoming a new person into our family and we’re taking time to settle in.
In two weeks, I’m sharing my conversation with Lauren Lim of Photography Concentrate. Lauren and her husband, Rob, recently released a tutorial, How to Shoot Awesome Video. Lauren talks about what is special about video and tells us in simple terms how to make our family movies great.
During 2016, I did a daily photo project – a 365 project. I took photos, chose one and posted it on Flickr every day. Even though 365 projects can be difficult and demanding, I’m a big fan. I’ve seen so many people come into their own as photographers as a result of doing a daily photo project.
A fabulous group of listeners to the TWiP Family podcast joined me and started daily photo projects of their own. This was not my first project and I knew that a year of photos has its ups and downs.
The day before the project started, I talked to Zane and Simon, who were about to begin their first 365 project. You can hear those conversations on Episode 2 of The Family Photographer. Then, in June of the year, we talked about how they were feeling halfway through their projects. (That episode is here.) Today, I’m sharing our conversation after the project was over.
What did they learn? What was surprising? What was difficult? What are their plans for their photography in the coming year?
The Flickr group is still going strong and there’s a new Facebook group now too. It’s great to have company as you create your year of photos.
To make things easier for me for the next few months as we welcome our new baby, the podcast will come out every other week.
The next show will be out on February 7 and is an interview with photographer, Erin Brandt. Take a minute to check out her bright and joyful family photography.
Thank you for listening to The Family Photographer. If you have a question, comment about the show, guest suggestion or just want to say hello, email me – firstname.lastname@example.org
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Thank you to my sound editor, Suzanne Llewellyn. You might not notice what she does but you would notice if she didn’t do it.
I remember telling my photographer friends, “What I really want to do for other people is what I do for my family.” That is, take photos of us just being together on ordinary days. My friends would say, “You’d love Kirsten Lewis.” She was doing what was talking about. She spent all day with families and made funny, honest, and tender photos of the family’s day.
When I started the TWiP Family podcast, I contacted Kirsten right away asking her to be a guest on the show. (You can hear that interview over on This Week In Photo – right here.)
I was thrilled to get another chance to talk with her for this week’s show. Since talking to her the first time, she became a mother. We talk about how having a child of her own has impacted her work with families. We also talk about something she feels very strongly about and I know a lot of you also are interested in – sharing photos of her daughter online. I loved hearing how she keeps her work from being stagnant and she talks about teaching photographers how to use layers in their photos. She also talks about what cameras she’s using these days. I hope you enjoy the show.
As many of you know, I’m expecting our fifth child any day (or week) now. To make way for the new baby, I’m changing how often The Family Photographer comes out. For the next few months, the podcast will come out every other week.
The next show will be out on January 24. The episode is a conversation with my friends, Zane and Simon, who recently finished 365 projects. We talk about how the year went for them. They talk about what they learned, the challenges and highlights of the year as well as thoughts about the year to come.
On this short holiday break show, I talk about taking simple portraits of the people you love. My daughter needed a photo for an application and I was surprised to find I didn’t have a simple portrait of her. On the podcast, I talk about why these simple portraits get overlooked, why they are important and some places to find good light for your portraits.
I used three different kinds of light for these recent photos of my kids. The first I used a table top soft box light. The second, is window light. The third is a bounced flash. All three photos are in the room I talk about in the show. It’s the one room in our house that gets a decent amount of light.
This year, I discovered that the doorway of our windowless garage was a good place to take simple portraits.
I love to see photos you make. Share a simple portrait you love in the comments.