How many years have you been in business in NYC?
How did you get your start and what was your initial inspiration?
I started taking headshots of local mom friends who were actresses trying to get back in the business after having children. My business snowballed to more than just headshots and was mostly word-of-mouth clients. My initial inspiration was the work of Peter Hurley, who consistently puts out great work and is also hilarious. For my portraiture work, I’ve always been inspired by fashion magazines and classic painted portraits like those from the English painter John Singer Sargent.
What do you feel differentiates you from others in your field?
I am a full service photographer, which means I take the time to get to know my clients in advance, preferably meeting them in person. This helps me get a feel for how my clients want to be photographed. I am also different from a lot of portrait photographers these days because I provide professional prints and wall hangings. Digitals are great too (for the right occasion/purpose) but there is nothing like a beautiful legacy portrait that will be passed down to future generations.
What do you feel gives you longevity in this big city with so many options?
My fine art portraits are classic in nature which never goes out of style.
How do you positively impact your clientele?
I help all my clientele (family, branding, etc.) see how beautiful or handsome they really are. My family and contemporary portrait sessions provide images that will be cherished for a long time and the branding photographs I capture help business owners portray their personality to their existing and potential clients.
What is your favorite part of your job?
Wow, there are so many parts of my job that I love! It’s hard to pick one favorite. Getting to meet and know my clients is definitely one of my favorite parts. I also love being able to capture people at their best, giving them beautiful printed portraits or branding images that helps them convey to the world their business and personality.
What is your favorite secret NYC spot?
I love Teardrop Park in Battery Park City. It’s a relatively small park nestled among several residential buildings. The park serves as an oasis in the city where kids can run and play on the lawn, the big slide, or in the sandbox. My son and his friends get creative and make up games, often pretending they are looking for hidden treasure, or maybe playing a simple game of one-hand touch football. The park has a collection of trees, bushes and plants that provide a great cover for birds migrating through the city in spring and fall. You would not believe the different birds you can see in this park!
How do you benefit mommys?
I benefit mommys by capturing them and their children with my camera. The childhood years are fleeting and it’s important to document not only your children but yourself.
What is the most memorable feedback a client has given you?
I worked with a young woman a few years ago that hadn’t had her photograph taken in a while due to being self-conscious. After the shoot she wrote me and said “I wanted to thank you for your work on Friday! As I mentioned, this was something very much out of my comfort zone, and during the shoot, your expertise made me feel relaxed and not quite as nervous- even though I struggled to not have awkward hands/arms :) As someone who can count on one hand the number of pictures of me that I actually like, I feel like I now have pictures of myself that I love every time I look at them.” I’ve often heard that I have the ability to relax clients during their shoots. This is very fulfilling to hear.
Can you pay it forward and name your top colleagues in the same field or related field?
Sue Bryce is a top colleague as well as my teacher and mentor. She, like me, photographs regular people looking to experience what it’s like to have beautiful legacy portraits of themselves. Felix Kunz, Vicky Papas Vergara and Susan Stripling are all photography colleagues that I look up to and admire as well.
What is the best advice anyone's ever given you?
Or what is your "mantra" / words to live by? My mom always told me that I could do anything I set my mind to. She raised my sister and I in a single parent household for a good portion of my childhood. She always led by example – even if it was a simple thing, such as fixing the sink!
As moms, the day can escape us, what is your best time-saving trick? One word – Amazon! I know that sounds lame, but I do rely on Amazon a lot. I often don’t have time to go from store to store so whatever I can order online I do.