How did you find photography? How has it evolved for you?
My dad and step dad were both amateur photographers. My dad used darkrooms and developed his own photos when I was really little. He always had a camera, my step dad is a poet and he also always took photos. Growing up we had artists visiting from all over along with poetry, art and music filling my house. When I turned 16 my step dad gave me my own camera which I immediately put to use. I began photographing all my friends, watching old black and white films and then trying to recreate the photos with dress up and interesting locations. This started my real love for photography.
Photography for me has had many incarnations and that’s what I love about it. Wherever I am in life, there’s a space to make images. I started out shooting travel, then getting sent to places with models took me back to my love of fashion, and from there it evolved to fashion and beauty. Once I had my daughter, I didn’t want to be on the road as much, and I started shooting kids and lifestyle and catalog. Now my daughter is a teen and I am back to fashion and still life. Since I started in editorial, I always try to tell a story. Even if we are selling something I look for the narrative. I love the mix: studio/location/models/portraits/kids.
What is your creative process like?
I am always thinking of images I want to take and ways I want to grow. I collect inspiration, I make mood boards for things I want to try, things that inspire me. I am always soaking up ideas and planning photos in my mind.
Where is home for you?
I live in Oakland California. After 20 years in NYC, (and having my daughter) my husband and I wanted to be closer to nature and family.
What inspires you?
I get inspired by everything: light and landscape, people and fashion, travel, old images, film, the gardens around me, the people I get to work with. Textiles, friendships, books, other creatives, I travel so much for work but now that we are grounded I am finding all this beauty just in my neighborhood that I never knew was here. My family inspires me. I love dance, theater, painting. Even this far along in my career I get inspired everyday by things around me.
What advice would you offer to your younger self?
I used to think each job was the most important for my career. Now that I have been doing this for a while and have seen so many changes both in my own work and the industry, I would tell my younger self to try to carve out the balance, and also not to worry so much about starting a family and to keep taking photos and evolving. There are so many examples of working photographers who are mothers, but when I started I couldn’t see it around me. My daughter Flora brings me so much joy. I would tell my younger self not to worry, it’s a long path. Just enjoy each moment.
What are you dreaming of?
With Shelter in Place going into its 7th week I miss sitting in a friend’s back yard or a dinner party. Hugging my mama. I also really miss the creative collaborations of my work. I miss travel - I get so much from seeing other places and exploring the world. I appreciate the slowing down of all but I really miss being in community. And I feel worried for our world and the people who are struggling with basic necessities.