How did you first become interested in Photography?
I was editor of a horse magazine and was writing stories. It just made sense to also take pictures.
At What point did you first realize that you could make a career out of your art?
The combination of writing and photography worked well for me as it meant I could make money on many levels. By also being able to supply the pictures for my stories more media were interested in hiring me to cover events for them. I would say there was never one point that it all happened. It just evolved over time as the number of events I covered increased and more people got to know my work.
What kind of education or training helped you develop your skill set in Photography?
Getting out in the trenches and working with other photographers who were willing to share their knowledge.
How did you really break into the photographer industry?
I started covering major events. For instance I’ll be covering my 7th Olympic Games this year. The higher profile the events, the more experience I got and the more interest I received from media wanting to include my photos. As my photography improved, so did the interest in my photos.
What skills as a photographer do you think have really made you a success in
Capturing the feeling of the action. With horses there are those moments that you must capture in order for the photos to make sense to horse people. Those moments give you a more dramatic photo.
Can you give us a description of what you do with your pictures that set you
apart from other artists?
My photos are part of a multi-level platform. I am a writing who supports my articles with my photos. I am a photographer who people hire to cover events or do special photos shoots. I also have a PR company and being able to offer my clients photos as part of the package is a great perk I can offer and one that is much appreciated.
Can you describe what you think have been the most important ways that you have built your business and marketed yourself in the industry?
I always keep my word. If you need a photo by a certain deadline, it is there on time or early. If I am hired to photograph something, I make sure what the client gets in the end is of the highest quality. Quality work gets you more business. Making sure you always do things in a timely and professional manner is more important than you realize.
Thus far where have most of your clientele come from?
The equine world. It could be a cover photo for a magazine or a stallion photo shoot. Or it simply could be me covering an event for multiple publications.
What are your favorite things about being a photographer?
Looking at the photos after the event is over and getting to appreciate the talent of the horses and riders through the photos that stop the action of those special moments.
Could you give us a 9-5 of your average work day?
There is no such thing in my life. Every day for me is different depending on whether I am on the road covering an event or in my office doing followup for clients. No two days are the same. I also am a workaholic and will keep going until the work is done.
If you could go back in time and give yourself advice starting out in the field of photography, what would it be?
Working in the trenches taught me more than going to school to learn about photography.
Any final words of wisdom for aspiring photographers?
Find your niche. It’s better to specialize in some aspect of photography than to be all things to all people.