The majority of my time is spent in individual portraiture. That means families, children, high school seniors, boudoir and “I have no good reason but I want some nice photos of myself” photography. I keep wedding and event photography in the mix both personally and by working with Melissa McClain Photography, a studio in Linglestown, Pennsylvania. And, when I’m not working with people, I enjoy using my camera to make ordinary things look a little less ordinary and not at all like a photograph (you know, for hanging on walls and stuff.)
What inspires you to create?
I joke that my mission in this life is to make sure that all parents have good photos of their children. But it doesn’t stop there. Everyone should have /be in/see good photos of themselves. I mean, who doesn’t like to feel pretty??
I go into a session with goals but they are, more or less, just a starting point. I work with living, moving, breathing, sometimes not comfortable being the center of attention subjects. Oh. And when those living, moving, breathing subjects are children? They run the show no matter if it matches up with my goals.
Yes! Usually one or two. Maybe three. I have a silly habit of falling madly in love with a few images from each session. So my love lasts as long as it takes me to fall in love again. Though, if truly pressed, I would say that my favorite is an image of my niece in some fairy wings when she was 2ish with curls that didn’t stop. And, much like all first loves, it’s not technically perfect but my heart still melts when I see it.
Who would you consider an influence on your art?
Duane Michals! I most enjoy his ability to use a series of photographs to tell a story. My favorite example is “Things are Queer”
Do you listen to music when you paint? Who?
While I’m editing I usually listen to/half watch shows or movies on Netflix or Hulu. Maybe I should say that I only watch documentaries or thought provoking independent films (I do!) but I also watch the crappiest of crappy reality shows.
Tell me something quirky about yourself.
I don’t eat cake. I hate it. I will eat the heck out of brownies. Or key lime pie. Or various candies. (And I never say no to a cheeseburger.) But, cake? I hate.
What do you aim to make people feel when they view your art?
Surprise? If that makes sense? Most of my photo sessions are family sessions with children Parents witness their uncooperative kiddos who sometimes cry, misbehave, and/or run around like crazy. I always reassure them that my trigger finger is fast. And, that the best photos aren’t the perfect photos.
But I’m not sure the “first timers” believe me until I give them proof.
How to work my cameras. Like, reaaaaalllly work my cameras. I know what I know but I ALSO know I don’t know a lot.
No! Why don’t I? My shower singing has been stunted by too many years of apartment living. I know far too much about the lives of other people. They don’t need to be tortured by my shower singing.
Bio: She likes bunnies, tucking her jeans inside of her boots, being in warm places, banjo music, CocaCola, photos taken in photo booths, Weasel, dresses with pockets and recycling paper. She also likes to take your photos. She shoots with natural light. She creates light. She shoots inside. She shoots outside. She shoots at her place. She shoots at your place. She shoots anywhere in between. She keeps it simple. Most importantly, she keeps it about you.