I met Artemis at Jasmine Star’s blog in the comment section. The moment I clicked over to her blog I was smitten. She has a great picture taking style and her writing is out of this world!
Do you know her? You are going to love her!
What did you want to be when you were 10 years old?
Plastic surgeon. I am a very visually charged person and was obsessed and fascinated by the prospect of being able to mold people’s faces into symmetry and perfection.
What did you major in during college?
When did you decide to get a bigger, better camera?
I started shooting with my sister’s Canon Rebel in college and just absolutely fell in love with photography. I decided to start investing in top-of-the-line camera lenses since I knew one day I would upgrade my camera body. My first big purchase was the 1.2 50 mm and I still use that lens the most today. Then a couple of years ago, soon after Patrick and I started dating, he splurged on me for my birthday and got me the Canon 5d Mark II. I didn’t want something THAT big but Patrick’s kind of like that…and I couldn’t say no.
Tell me about having a twin.
Carly and I are so close. I guess the best way to explain it to someone is we talk 50 times a day and still have things to talk about at the end of the night. We are best friends AND blood so the bond is pretty ridiculous.
How often do you see her now?
She moved down to Los Angeles from Northern California to help me start my photography business when she graduated from college (I graduated a year earlier than she did). So at one point we were roommates sleeping together on a futon in a one-room studio. We live 40 minutes apart from each other now but we still manage to all get together at least once a week. God has always kept her closest to me when I needed her the most.
Tell me about your photography business?
I started my business in April of 2009 and things went from zero to 60 almost right away. I served as the artistic director and my sister was the business lady. We operated out of our studio apartment and managed to book something like 7 weddings and 10 photo sessions in the first couple of months. Things really slowed down for us when I got pregnant later that year since I couldn’t keep up with the full-day wedding shoots anymore. It was a very difficult time for me—physically and emotionally—to have to let my photo baby go to keep my real baby alive. And that’s where I sort of am today…figuring out what next?
How did you pick the name?
I have always wished that my parents had named me Artemis instead of Christine. It just sounds so cool. Ever since I can remember, Artemis has been my alias and it’s strange because last year a psychic told me in one of my past lives, I was a warrior—and the name Artemis actually comes from the Greek goddess of hunt. So I started using the name Clover after a summer working at Paramount Studios. It was the season of The Transformers, Indiana Jones, and Cloverfield. And the clover, a sign of good luck in all its herby goodness, just sort of stuck. I began to write stories using Artemis Clover as my protagonist and when the time came for me to name my photography studio, there was no question what it had to be called.
Was the business part the hardest part for you?
YES! In a sad way, the business took the art and fun out of the photography and for a while I swore I didn’t like taking photos anymore. Lots of people have stellar equipment and there are some crazy good artists out there. Taking an amazing photo isn’t the hard part of the industry. It’s the business and the people. You need to have sound business knowledge and a killer personality to emerge from the crowd.
Do you have any tips for share for people that are going to start a business? What do you wish you would have known when you started?
If you have the gusto and guts to start your own business, GOOD FOR YOU! It is a wonderful learning experience but expect to lose lots of money on your mistakes. Everyone makes mistakes and you’ll pay for them. But think of it as your graduate education and it will hurt less. So always factor in the rainy days and don’t expect miracles. You are no different than the person next to you and nothing will get handed to you. You need to want it more than anyone else. If you are truly passionate about your business, just keep working at it and you won’t fail.
What is your favorite thing about living in California?
I was born and raised in sunny SoCal so I don’t know anything else. I do enjoy how spoiled we all are here: The weather, the access to food, art, and entertainment, the beaches, desert, and snow… It’s kind of the dream landscape if you can get past the crowds, cost of living, and traffic.
What three words would you use to describe your baby?
Magical, charming, and AMAZE-BALLS.
What was the thing that surprised you the most about having King?
I never thought I could have a baby. I don’t know why but it’s been one of those unfounded fears of mine. And I will never get over the fact that I built him in my body. From a grain of sand to a jostling baby—WOW!
Where is your favorite place to go out to dinner?
I love any place that has a good happy hour menu: Yummy sharable appetizers and delectable drinks at a great price. And these days they have to be stroller-friendly as well.
What is your favorite outfit?
I have a tiny wardrobe but you’d never know it. I buy 5 or so quality pieces from Express, Banana Republic, and/or Guess every six months and have clothes for the whole year. Recently, my outfit of choice has been jeggings from Lucky jeans and a tank top and light sweater from Express. I finish the outfit with these gray boots I bought last Christmas for myself.
Do your parents love the pictures you take of King? How often do you send them hard copies?
My parents are blog stalkers even though they didn’t want to admit it at first. Since I write about a very sensitive time in my life on my blog, my mom and dad chose not to read it since it hits so close to home for them. But the pictures got them and now they read for the pictures! My mom calls me every night and proudly tells me how she saves all of King’s pictures on her iPad from the blog. I also put many of my pictures on my Flickr.com account so my mom downloads the ones she wants to print. And for Christmas this year—SHH!—I am making hard-copy photo albums for all the grandparents.
Where do you get your pictures printed?
I am on a Kodak kick right now and they have a little store near where I live so I get all my prints there. But many online printers (like Fuji, seehere.com, and Blurb) offer really tantalizing discounts so if the price is right and I am not in a hurry, I get stuff from them, too.
When you had your business, how did you decide where to get prints?
If you are making prints for your business, you MUST make sure you already know your stuff looks good from your printer. A picture can look perfect on your desktop but how they translate to print is a different story. I printed the same picture from different stores and chose the place that had the closest calibration to my computer. But in the digital time and age, most clients want the high-resolution files so they can share their pictures online with their friends and family and forgo hard-copies altogether. That’s fine so long as you include a recommendation on where they can get the best quality of their photos printed. And it’s probably not WalMart.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
Nothing I’ve ever wanted or planned for came true for me so I have no idea where life will take me. All I know is the more I live, the more mystical and magical the human experience has become.
Any other bits of advice that you could share that will help us all on our photography journey?
You don’t need permission or pardon to do anything. It’s you life and capture all the beauty and color as you please.
For the first time ever, I am doing a 2 part interview. Artemis shares a lot of great information about photography and starting a business. Come back tomorrow if you want to learn about the rise and fall of her business. If you have any questions of your own you want to ask, feel free.