Welcome to our featured photographer spotlight, we have an amazing featured photographer this week, we know you will love her! Our featured photographer spotlight is one of our highest honors. At the end of the year, each photographer has an automatic entry to win ProPhoto Stop’s Photographer of the year award. We hand select our entrants and at the end of the year they will have the opportunity to win along with entries submitted by our fans! This week I had the pleasure of interviewing Carrie Anne Miranda Photography, a gifted photographer from Fresno, California, who is known for her vibrant, earthy images. We hope you check out her work and let it inspire you.
Q: First off, tell us a bit about you as a person, not as a photographer.
I’m a Leo, so I am outgoing, fun, free-spirited, spontaneous, loyal and full of emotion. I see the good in people, and the beauty in the world around me. I try not to take a moment for granted and appreciate the small things in life. I like to think that I’m a pretty cool person to hang out with. I love to laugh, and talk…I definitely like to talk.
Q: Where are you located?
I am right in the middle of California, in the Central Valley. Fresno, Ca we are pretty much surrounded by agriculture here. It’s unbearably hot in the summer and not so unbearably cold in the winter. We are about 2-3 hours away from all the biggest cities, the mountains and the beach.
Q: When did you first officially start your photography business? I officially started…runs to check Facebook…November 2011. Up until that point I had not been accepting any clients what so ever, I really wanted to build my skill and feel comfortable and confident with my work before expecting anyone to pay for it!
Q: What made you decide to get into photography? I guess I always had an appreciation for photography. My father was a hobbyist and was always submitting prints in contests and local fairs. I grew up sitting through two-hour slide shows of our family vacations and sports events,lol, I think it was just in me. When I had my own children the desire to preserve every moment with possible, led me to purchase my first DSLR.
Q: What was the turning point in which you decided to turn this into a profession? I guess for me, it was kind of a challenge….or maybe wanting reassurance, that my work was good enough that people would pay me to take their pictures. I originally never wanted to go into business but in a quest to always push myself to be better, it just kind of ended up that way. Now, I am so grateful that I get to do something I adore, and help support my family by doing so…amazing!
Q: What are some of the biggest mistakes you made in the beginning that you wish you could warn other photographers who are starting out, NOT to do? I think for me, and something I still struggle with, is confidence, or lack thereof. Don’t be afraid to let yourself down, or make a mistake, or put yourself out there because you are scared to fail. You’ll end up being the only thing holding yourself back and that is not a position anyone wants to be in, believe me.
Q: How many sessions do you average per month? Since I work part time, and mostly on the weekends, I average about 8-10 sessions a month. That doesn’t include weddings, or charity sessions.
Q: What is your favorite type of session? I really enjoy children. I love their spirit, and their carefree attitudes. The honest expressions, and unfiltered wonder…their curiosity. I love being able to capture that.
Q: What is something you see other photographers doing that you aren’t interested in doing/trying? Hmm…shooting Nikon? LOL No, really though there isn’t much I wouldn’t want to try at least once.
Q: What is something you have seen other photographers do that you would love to do but haven’t gotten the chance? Oh there are so many things, I want to travel and shoot around the world. I want to continue to give back and see where that can take me. I want to push myself to try genres of photography that I might not feel necessarily comfortable with. I want to teach, I want to take an amazing workshop…there are too many things to count!
Q: We all have a horror story from a session, one session that everything seemed to go wrong. Care to share yours? Surprisingly enough, I’ve only had one. It was just a VERY difficult session and no one was cooperating. I felt like giving up half way through the session. I had to let the photos sit for about a week before even looking at them. What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger, right?
Q: What is the funniest thing to ever happen during a session? Hmm…let’s see. I once almost gave my partner a black eye accidentally punching her with my 35L to her grill while on a shoot. I fell in what looked to be a 2 ft deep hole and through my camera a week after one of my clients had fallen in the same exact hole. Oh, don’t even get me started on weddings, there are too many there to even list!
Q: Are you a Canon or Nikon lover? Canon bay-bee!
Q: What is your favorite lens? It used to be my 35L, until good ol’ Mr. 135 walked into my life. I can’t even fathom living without him now. He completes me. He had me at 2.0.
Q: How do you balance your work and your personal life? I have absolutely no idea. I don’t. It all kind of mixes together. I am accepting applications for a life coach, house cleaner, and a nanny. I’ll pay you in print credit.
Q: How would you describe your photography style? Hmm, I want to say warm for sure. Not just color but hopefully in feel too. Carefree, fun, connected, emotional. Those are the things I would like to be at least.
Q: What is your most favorite image you have ever shot and why is it your favorite? A shot I took of my daughter for her 6 year birthday session. It was the first image of mine, that I felt really told a story, or I guess left a story to be told.
Q: Name another photographer who inspires you. Nooo…there are soo many. I will have to say my first ever photog crush was on Lisa Lucky. I am inspired everyday by the many photographers around me; friends, colleagues, mentors.
Q: What is your second most used piece of equipment other than your camera and lenses? My computer? Gosh I really don’t use much else. I don’t use a grey card, I rarely use my reflector, I only use flash for weddings, and I don’t use a ton of props either. Gosh, I guess that’s kind of boring.
Q: What is something you still want to learn about photography? Ohh, sooo much! I have so many workshops on my ‘someday’ list. I’d love to have the give Macro a second chance. I’d love to broaden my knowledge on newborn photography. I’m loving what I am learning with weddings, and I would love to go a little deeper in my personal journey with photography.
Q: What is your favorite strategy for editing a session (at a desk, in front of the TV with a laptop, with tea, after the kids go to bed, etc…?) I cannot edit on a laptop it makes me crazy. I have to sit down at my desktop and just go for it. One session at a time, don’t stop until it’s done. Edit in the order I shoot. Usually always late at night when everyone is alseep.
Q: Are you a Mac or PC lover? I’m on a PC desktop but hoping to switch out to a Mac VERY soon.
Q: What is your favorite part of preparing for the session? Probably nothing, other than talking clothing choice with my customers…I always get a bit of anxiety before the session so that would be my least favorite time. Once I’m there and in the zone, I’m good.
Q: What is the best advice you could give to photographers who are just starting out? Don’t get ahead of yourself. Do this because you love it and not just to make money. Practice, practice, practice…and never stop. Don’t be so afraid to fail you fail yourself. Do what makes you happy and find a way to make it prosperous, never stop trying to be the best.
Q: What is the most challenging aspect of your job? The business part. Collecting payments, selling. I want to just give everything away for free, but I just can’t.
Q: Describe the best part of your job. When you know that a client truly ‘gets’ what you do and understands how much you put into your art. Being able to use my talent to give back, working with Sweet Nectar Society, the charity I co-founded and working with all the amazing families I have been given the chance to meet. It will always be the best thing about my job.
Follow Carrie Anne Miranda on Facebook and on her website!
Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/carrieannemirandaphotography