I loved Sarah the minute I met her.
Sarah has a unique take on life.
The most important thing in her world is being a Mom.
She loves shooting but she is proud to tell you that she is a MWAC (Mom with a Camera) first and foremost.
She won't miss her child's special days for a shoot.
I love that about her.
Sarah is doing big things in the Pennsylvania photography market close to where I live. I am proud to call her a fellow photographer, and even prouder to call her my friend.
Sarah, you have the most creative name for your photography business.
Tell us all about it.
Choosing a name was such a big production! I mean, what a big decision. :) I first had to decide if I wanted to use my name. But the answer to that was pretty easy for me. My current last name is my married name, but I am no longer married.
I knew, at some point, there would be the potential for a name change, so using my name was not an option. Once I decided that I would not use my name, picking a brand name for myself was not easy!
I next decided that I wanted the word "capture" in my name, because I felt like I captured moments in time, and that was my specialty. Capturing real moments.
I was brainstorming with my very good photog friend, Sara Baldwin of Saratography, and she had thrown out there "capturing butterfly's" and almost as soon as she said that it gave me the idea of "Capturing Fireflies" - the reason fireflies came to me was because they are fascinating to me!
I grew up in SoCal, where the only fireflies we knew of were the pretend ones during the Disneyland ride Pirates of the Carribean. Once I moved to PA and got to experience them for the first time, in real life, a whole new world opened up to me.
I still get very excited to head out during the summer nights to capture fireflies (lots of bug spray needed!)
When did you first pick up your camera and decide that you wanted to take your photography to the next level?
There were a couple key moments that got me there. I have a friend on-line that is a fantastic photographer, and she was also a Mom (we were on a forum together) she ultimately was my first inspiration to be a MWAC - I was a SAHM and couldn't afford to get my daughter's pictures done as much as I would have liked.
It took me many years to talk myself into investing into a DSLR, but when I finally took the plunge I ultimately had no desire to become professional. I simply wanted to take great pictures and capture fantastic special moments with my daughter that were so quickly flying by.
I was also going through some major changes at the time (divorce) and I came to a point in my life that I wanted to give back. I was a volunteer for Bengal Rescue Network (cats) and had a foster Bengal in my care that needed some help.
He was so very itchy!! Missing fur on his belly, sores on the soles of his feet from biting, ect. He was alergic, to something. And the best chance to help him was to have him tested for allergies, so that we could have special allergy meds created just for him!
The testing was $200, and a 1 year supply of his special meds would be $200. The rescue did not have $400 in their funds for this guy, so I started fundraising using my fancy camera and my newly learned skills.
This is really what got me started. I had so much fun doing this fundraiser, and it showed me that my passion for photography went a little deeper then I had originally thought. ;) I really enjoyed photographing pets, but the day I attended the I heart faces photowalk was the day I realized that I also enojoyed capturing people. It was also the day I met Becky!
You started a huge community on facebook of photographers to share and learn. What prompted you to do that?
Everything I know, I learned from other photographers. Don't get me wrong...I spent many weeks sitting in front of my upstairs window with my new camera in hand taking pictures in manual....of absolutely nothing. I took thousands of pictures, playing around with different settings, just to see visually how they affected the end result.
But, those little tips, that only those that had experience knew, are a big part of where I am today. I am so thankful for those photographers out there that posted blogs, and gave tips on their FB pages, uploaded video's to youtube, answered my questions. Giving back is in my nature.
The photography world can be so cut throat. And just plain rude! I never want to be like that. And I get great satisfaction in helping others, anytime I can.
You have a full time job and you shoot on the weekends and some evenings, how difficult is that?
It can be very difficult, especially being a mother. Balancing motherhood, a full time job, a photography business, and my ever so cherished lazy days can be tough. I like my sleep. Shooting every weekend equals no "sleep in" mornings, but I guess I am still used to that from being a Mom. I was just getting used to being able to "sleep in" once I started this gig. But, it just makes me cherish them even more when I do get them. ;)
What has been your favorite shoot so far?
I think my favorite shoot so far was my sisters "prom dress" shoot. She got herself a beautiful neon green prom dress and to this day she is one of my best models. We went to our local train station and utilized some of the fantastic textures we had available to us.
What is one character trait of yours you would like to see in your daughter?
I hope that she can always stay positive. One of the things I try to always do is stay positive. I have learned that my emotions can control my overall day, therefore if I stay positive I am much more happy everyday.
I am far too sensitive and allow things to weigh on my mind more than they should. I do hope that she can have a thicker skin than me and stand up more for what she needs in her life. I am getting there but do hope she will learn faster then I did.
Does your daughter like being the subject of your photography?
No. It must be so tough being a photographers daughter. You should see the eye roll sometimes when my camera comes out. She has had enough....but I hold out hope that she grows out of that stage and finds a new stage where she enjoys having her picture taken. :)
Editing pictures takes hours and hours, how do you manage your time when you are editing?
I don't think I could do what I do without Lightroom. Once I started using Lightroom I felt like my world opened up and I could finally fit editing into my busy life. I would receommend LR to everyone wanting to speed up their work flow.
You are a lover of cats, tell us about yours.
I have two beautiful Bengal boys. Rajah is a snow marbled Bengal, and Leo is a brown spotted Bengal. They both have such unique personalities and love each other to pieces. :)
If money was no object, what is something you would do with your life this year?
If money was no object, I would quit my day job. I want so much to have more time to devote to my business!
There are lots of different photography blogs and sites to visit. What are 3 of your favorite places to go and learn?
I don't visit these enough these days but they each had a part in helping me learn via the internet. :)
You love music! What made you start using Spotify? What is your favorite song lately? Do you sing along?
I love music!! Yes, I do. And spotify is free. You can't beat free! I have it on all day at work, in the car, while I shower, clean, and pretty much anytime I can get away with it. I sing along in the shower and in the car....only when by myself. ;) My favorite song lately is Overcome by Live.
Nothing new, but it gives me goosebumps everytime I hear it. I like it oldschool....Well oldschool for my generation. You should check out my spotify playlist! It is a little bit of everything. ;)
It is amazing how many fantastic photographers are in my area, as well as the network that has formed because of that! Many of the locals are all friends and hang out with each other at events and during Holidays! There are a few great meet-up groups that meet weekly or monthly as well. I know that I am very blessed with that network that is available to me so close to home.
When you meet other photographers have you found them to be warm and welcoming?
In person, I have not met a mean photographer yet. Online seems to be a different story, but locally the photographers are super nice.
If someone tells you "Hey, I got a new Canon Rebel so I can take pictures JUST like yours. I don't need you any more." what is the first thought that runs thru your mind?
I must admit, my first thought in my head would be something like, ugh, yeah alright because it's nothing more then pushing a button, right? But that would never come out of my mouth. ;) I would offer help and hope they were one of the few that actually strives to learn and better themselves instead of taking what they get in Auto with a nice camera. I love to help those that love to learn.
What one thing has helped you more than any other thing to grow and learn photography this year?
This year was a year of learning to be confident in myself. I know, I should have done that before starting a business. ;)
There is something unique about Sarah.
She is down to earth and kind.
Her pictures are like art.
Her website is gorgeous. Wait until you see it!