Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Interview with a Photographer: Mindy Watson

Mindy is the girl next door.

She is friendly and helpful and very, very sweet.

She captures fleeting moments with ease.

Come visit with Mindy Watson this week.

You are in for a treat!

What made you first pick up a camera?

freckles 31              There was no one defining moment. I have always liked taking pictures, but most of them (prior to kids) were of friends partying, just hanging out, and typically inappropriate. freckles 30After I had kids, I just got sick of going to portrait studios. Its in my nature to try to do things on my own, so I figured I could teach myself and get more satisfaction out of the images I was getting of my kids.freckles 29

When did you decide you needed a 'real' camera?freckles 27

May 2008. I was having a bad week at work and was pigging out on Dove mini bars. They have little sayings on the inside of the wrappers, and one that I opened said “Find Your Passion”. I kept the wrapper on my desk for about a week and thought about it a lot during that time. I eventually wrote out my ‘plan’ to find my passion, which included getting serious about learning photography, along with 4 other areas in my life that I wanted to focus on. mindy I wrote my little plan on a post-it note and attached the wrapper to the back and I keep it in my wallet so it goes wherever I go.

What kind of camera did you get?freckles 17

Nikon D60

How do you think you have progressed over this past year?freckles 18

I think I have become much more comfortable behind the lens. I love the view of the world through my camera and have had a great time learning the technical aspects of photography. My biggest accomplishment within the year has been going from shooting from auto to manual, which I’m still working on mastering, but am pretty satisfied with where I am in the process.


Tell me about starting a business.freckles 21

In all honesty, I initially started the business just to keep things with Uncle Sam on the up and up. I haven’t strayed too much from my original plan, which is focusing on children and family portraits, but over the past year, have been opening to trying pretty much anything that came my way. freckles 19Its been a fun year and I have met a lot of talented photographers and worked with great clients.

What was hardest? Coming up with a name? Coming up with a price list? Knowing how many pictures to edit?freckles 20

Freckles and Dimples was not my original choice for a name. The name I really wanted was already taken by another photographer in my state, so I couldn’t go with that. The name actually fell into my lap, and most of the credit goes to my best friend, who was visiting and commented on how much my daughter had grown and just impulsively said “and look at all of those freckles!!” Currently, my biggest struggle is figuring out how much I can realistically handle given that this is a part-time job. I need to really take a look at pricing and printing options, and that’s my next project to tackle.

Do you shoot pictures every day?freckles 24

I try. I usually have my camera with me every day, but sometimes its in the trunk of my car, or somewhere not accessible, when I want to take a photo. In the process of learning to shoot manual, taking pictures regularly has been priceless for me…even if its just of a little dust bunny on my kitchen floor, it has helped tremendously in getting comfortable with my camera settings.freckles 23

Is it hard to have a full time job outside of the home, as well as Mommy as well as pour energy into your start up business?freckles 26

Yes…but, I know there are a lot of other people who balance the same things I do. I am grateful for all of the things I get to balance.freckles 22

Does your husband support your hobby? Is he overwhelmed when you tell him how much lenses and such are?freckles 25

Sometimes. : ) Yes, he is supportive, although I know going out and doing shoots, taking classes/workshops, and my time editing can wear on him. And, no, he’s not overwhelmed with how much equipment costs, but only because I don’t tell him! Early in the process, we made a deal that funding my photography business would not come out of our personal costs, so anything I make goes into buying equipment. freckles 2I like it that way, because it really makes me think about what I need based on what I am learning, instead of just going out and buying everything & not knowing what to do with it.freckles 6

If you could shoot any person alive on the planet right now, who would you want to shoot?freckles 5

This is an awesome question!!! I think shooting any average Joe walking down Main Street in Anytown, USA would be a fun way to get to know someone. freckles 10Wouldn’t it be great if someone walked up to you with a camera and said, tell me your story while I document it with photos?

But, if I had to pick I think it would be cool to shoot my favorite band at Red Rocks Amphitheater in Colorado. freckles 8Or, maybe Will Ferrell. I think he’d be fun to hang with for a little bit, and maybe take pictures on stage at Radio City. Maybe he’s done that before…I just thought of that one off the top of my head.freckles 9

Have you enjoyed learning photo shop?

Any special photoshop tips you want to share?freckles 13

Yes, I have enjoyed learning PS. There is so much to learn, but it’s a great tool. The best tip I can give to anyone starting out is to learn actions! I love actions and learning how to make them has made my life a lot easier.freckles 14

Any advice for everyone out there who is too nervous to start a business like you?freckles 15

Have goals. My one goal was to be open to shooting anything that came my way to see what kinds of shoots I liked to do. I did that over the past year, and lo and behold, I don’t like shooting weddings! There is too much pressure. freckles 3

My other goal has been to ‘keep calm and carry on’. It takes time to build a business and I have always tried to keep the perspective of learn, practice, and then learn some more. freckles 7This also goes for all of the things ‘out there’ that there are to buy, join, participate in. Its like parenting, pick the important battles first so you have a foundation, and then go from there (well, that’s at least how I’d like to think of my parenting skills…)freckles 4

Who is a photographer you are inspired by. (Several years ago, I got hooked on Karen Walrond’s blog Chookoloonks. freckles 11She shoots beautiful images, some of which have taken my breath away when I first see them. freckles 1She actually just posted a close up photo of a dragonfly that is forever etched in my brain because the detail is amazing.freckles

But, I’m not just inspired by her photography, she also seems to be such a peaceful and genuine person, that if I’m even a tad agitated and I read a post, it calms me down. freckles 16She writes beautifully and has such a pure perspective on the issues that she writes about. I mean, a photobomb to send a message of peace???? Brilliant!!

             freckles 12    I am so glad I can call Mindy my friend.

We live in the same state and have the chance to interact twice this year. It has been fun exploring photography with her.

Go visit!

Freckles and Dimples Blog

Photography Portfolio

50 comments:

theTsaritsa said...

I also have a weakness for those Dove mini chocolates! Glad you're out doing what you love, and great photos!

Lolli said...

I can totally relate with you! I was in your position just a short time ago. I am happy that I stuck with it, through the nerves and the self-doubts...because this is something I love and I can see myself getting better. You obviously have some major talent!!

Oh, and for the record, weddings are not my favorite things, either. Too stressful!

Heather said...

What struck me was that you really have a knack for capturing a variety of perspectives depending on the client (or adorable kid!) Likewise you are comfortable with a vareity of editing styles.

septembermom said...

Mindy, thank you so much for sharing your love of photography here too! I'm very excited to meet you :) Your photographs are wonderfully engaging and heartwarming in many ways. You have a great perspective in many of these shots. I love how you found your Muse from a Dove bar. You sound like me, a fellow chocolate lover :) You have an amazing talent and I wish you the best of luck!!!

Jill said...

I am glad I got to meet you on the photo walk and to hear you are now doing this as a business. Congrats! you are definitely growing in the editing department! Great work!

Blessings,
Jill
http://fnaphotography.blogspot.com

Formerly known as Frau said...

Great Interview Becky! I love her pictures she is very talented. I'm always amazed when someone can find their passion and turn it into something so special.

Farmgirl Paints said...

Love how she captures happiness in each of her subjects:) What a gift!

Brooke said...

i think it goes without saying that the race feet is my favorite of the pictures.

i admire mindy and people like her who aren't afraid to pursue her dreams.

Melinda said...

Mindy's photography is naturally beautiful! Great interview, Becky!!

Caseybumpinalong said...

Great pics (especially the last two - love 'em!) and great interview - love that you were inspired by chocolate :).

keli @ kidnapped by suburbia said...

beautiful images from a beautiful photographer!!

Laura D said...

Great interview...I enjoyed looking at all the pictures - I especially love the first picture, the baby in the crib (such sweetness and softness to the photo) and one of the last pictures of the little girl..You have a way of capturing such joy in your pictures..

Lori said...

Another great interveiw Becky..all you people with such talent just blow me away...I am in awe once again...I love that you embraced that message on the dove chocolate(love the dark chocolate one's myself and the messages :) and that you took and wrote your plan on a sticky note and attached the two together and carry them in your purse...very cool...every one of us should have such a passion in our lives and go after it. You do great work and I hope that you continue to do be successful in this adventure of yours. Bless you and your family...will have to go check out your blog soon.

Bless you dear friend. XX

Cecily R said...

The shot of the baby peeking out of the afghan...delicious. I'm so glad you've stuck with your goals and pursued your talent!

Skeller said...

Such beautiful expressions and such delightful, quirky compositions! Best of luck to you, Mindy, as you start and grow your business!

Again, Becky, you ask the best questions!! I know these interviews are a labor of love from you, and I always love reading them!!

MarshaMarshaMarsha said...

It is so great to read about you, Mindy!

Have goals. My one goal was to be open to shooting anything that came my way to see what kinds of shoots I liked to do.

I think that is just brilliant! You are brave to take on the differing projects that have come your way. Perhaps I shall do the same this next year... although I will pass on a wedding. Zoiks- that would be such high pressure!

MarshaMarshaMarsha said...

It is so great to read about you, Mindy!

Have goals. My one goal was to be open to shooting anything that came my way to see what kinds of shoots I liked to do.

I think that is just brilliant! You are brave to take on the differing projects that have come your way. Perhaps I shall do the same this next year... although I will pass on a wedding. Zoiks- that would be such high pressure!

lifebythecreek said...

OK, first of all, THANK YOU!!! Because of this interview, I am going to buy a bag of Dove minis with NO guilt at all. Because darn it, I need some direction in my life, and considering how the minis worked for you, I think I need to at least give them a try. ;<)
Second... wow! What beautiful images! You have quite an eye, and your captures are lovely. Expressions... the smiles, the smirks, the wrinkled noses; you manage to get those priceless moments from face to photo.
Third... I'm a wee bit envious. You get to see Becky twice a year? Gaaaah... not only are you talented, you're lucky, too! :<)
Great interview, Becky... I can see why Mindy is a favorite of yours.

Karen O'Donnell said...

Great interview as usual Becky. I really like Mindy's work...such a good eye......she catches the honesty of the moment!

Just Bits and Pieces said...

Beautiful images!!! And Becky....I really love your interviews.....I love learning about the people behind the amazing photos...thank you for bringing us yet another person to watch out for!

TOLIVER FAMILY said...

love her work...thx for sharing her with us!

Adoption of Jane said...

Congratulations on pursuing your dream. your interview is really important to me because I am on the verge of where you were prior to getting your camera. Blessings to you, your photos are beautiful and never stop believing in yourself.

Adoption of Jane said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Artemis Clover: The real L.A. love story. said...

so beautiful! i love her life perspective behind the lens and applaud her for having the courage to take her photography to the professional level. good luck!!

Julie said...

what a fun post with great pictures, thanks for sharing...

Raymonde said...

Thanks for another great interview. You have a knack to discover and encourage talent. Love it.

Take care. xxx

Buckeroomama said...

I love that Mindy found her passion with help from the wrapper of a Dove mini! I love reading about "Hallmark-y" moments like that. :)

I love Mindy's work and how she has different "styles"! It's so wonderful to see not just one single look and feel to her photos.

Marilyn said...

Great interview and wonderful pictures. I will be visiting her site.

allisonhoffman said...

I've been following your Freckles & Dimples blog since the Philly I Heart Faces photo walk. Your work is beautiful! I loved your interview, it was great to get to know the photographer behind the work!!

Sassy said...

Great interview! I am just beginning the process of starting a business. So it's always nice to read how others are going about it!

Tracy P. said...

You had me at "Dove minis"! These are beautiful. I wholeheartedly agree that life is made complete by living our passions. Congratulations on making this a reality in your life!

One thing I notice about your interviewees, Becky--you can tell by the relaxed, natural, beautiful expressions in their images that they do a fantastic job of connecting with people, just like you do. Thanks for introducing us to Mindy!

jennykate77 said...

She's great! I love her style of photography. I also love the name "Freckles and Dimples"...it's adorable and so fitting!

Hope you are having a beautiful day, Becky!!♥

JamericanSpice said...

That was a very nice interview. I like what she says about how she funds her business, by purchasing what she needs and not just go out buying stuff and not knowing what to do with them.

I also love the keep calm and keep on.

Gorgeous photos!

I'm just the MOM said...

She is so inspiring! To just go forward with her passion like that :) And her pictures are beautiful! My absolute fave pic is the one with the girl leaning on the sign with graffiti all over it...PRETTY!

Elaine A. said...

She has a wonderful eye and every photo seems to tell a story. Such talent!!c

And I love that a Dove chocolate wrapper helped her reach he goals! :D

Maddy said...

Love your interview, Mindy!! It's so great to call you friend now too :) Starting the business side of photography is definitely like running a bath. It can easily run too hot or too cold, if you're not midful and constantly adjusting. And even when you finally do find the right temperature, it eventually starts getting cold and you have to turn up the heat again! I agree! You mustcontinue to adjust, explore, learn until you find your niche and the thing that works best for you! I see many great things in your future if you continue with that philosophy!

RR Mama said...

You have some of the most talented friends!!! Mindy.... you take amazing pictures!! I love them and there are few that I just fell in love with even more than others. Keep doing what you are doing!

Freckles & Dimples Photography said...

thanks for the sweet comments, everyone! I'm glad some of you found inspiration in the dove mini bars....chocolate is definitely inspiring :)
@lifebythecreek - i agree, i am lucky to have hung out with becky this year, she's the type of gal that is good for the soul.
thank you, too, becky for the interview! i am so glad our paths crossed and for our friendship. your words and images are always heartfelt.

marc said...

Great interview! It's so fun to read about the experience of other photographers. I totally agree that learning actions in PS will help immensely.

Megan (Best of Fates) said...

I am so in love with that Oreo photo I might be forced to eat a bag of Oreos to feel close to it.

Kim said...

Loved the interview, loved the name she picked for her business, loved the photography - beautiful. Seems like she got one of those "God Winks" to me ;-)

Stepping On Cheerios said...

Every photographer has a story and I love it:)

ourlifeinaclick.blogspot.com said...

Becky I love how you tell a story with your interviews and photos!! These are some gorgeous, inspiring shots!! I will have to go check out Mindy's blog right now!

Kristin said...

What a great way to get to know you Mindy! Thank you to you both for sharing this story and some amazing photos! I really love the "Find Your Passion" bit. ; )

Busy Bee Suz said...

Beautiful photos and a beautiful interview!
Going to check her out....

Mrs4444 said...

LOVE the dandelion shot. Hi, Mindy :)

Mama Kayla said...

These interviews are so amazing. I absolutely love learning about other photographers. It inspires me because I can relate to their passion! Love love love these! I'm already looking forward to the next one.

Wanda said...

Looooove this close-up and personal with Mindy. She's has such a sweet, simple and pure style.

And you, Miss Beckster, are simply awesome with this interviewing and sharing. I think I really love you!!!

Puna said...

Fantastic interview! What a talented lady! I think that kids are the most challenging to shoot. She does a great job!

Margaret Almon said...

Wow, I'm impressed with the coherence of Mindy's eye, her vision of the world. Very cool. My aim is also to make my business self-supporting, and having goals seems to be really useful to Mindy. Thanks for the interview Becky.