Photographer Spotlight: Tiffany Farley

We are excited to introduce Tiffany Farley to our Rock the Shot readers.  Take a moment to learn more about her beautiful maternity and motherhood portraits, and be sure to visit her website. Thank you so much Tiffany for taking the time to share your work with us today!

Where did your inspiration for photography begin?
I am afraid that I come with the common tale that I have always loved taking photographs- but I promise it’s true! I began to fall in love with the camera when my High School offered a film photography elective. Photographing portraits has always been my favorite, especially the black and white. It remained a hobby over the years, and something I found myself really drawn to after college. My favorite online reads soon became different lifestyle photography blogs. I found myself so inspired by how photographers were capturing families outside of a traditional studio that I had known growing up. Giving myself permission to chase something I was so passionate about was one of the best decisions, and biggest steps of faith I have ever taken.

How would you describe your photography style?
My style of photography is very unique, intimate, and moving. The majority of my sessions are focused on the connection between just two, and most often related to motherhood. When someone looks at my work, I want them to FEEL something. I want that emotion to resonate deeply within them. I am drawn to what is classic and timeless, and keep in mind that my end goal is to provide art for my clients to pass down to next generations. This value becomes the decision maker behind how I direct a shoot, how I edit my work, and how I present my work to my clients after their session

Did you study photography in school or are you self taught?
Outside of my High School Film Photography elective I am self-taught. I learned everything I needed to get started from photographer’s blogs, and resources like Rock the Shot.

Do you shoot Canon or Nikon, and what is your favorite lens?
I’m a Canon girl, (although slowly learning on my Hasselblad) and my favorite lens is currently the 50mm 1:2L.

Do you have any tips for photographers on how to find the light?
I am very purposeful when scheduling the time of my shoots to photograph in light that suits my taste. My outdoor sessions are held in the very early morning, or the hour leading up to sunset. My indoor sessions are held during brighter times of the day and I always look for a clean window space to photograph my subjects near. I really love a soft directional light in my portraits, so I always move myself to an angle that helps create this. Sometimes all is takes is my stepping a little to the right or left to make a huge difference in the lighting of my subject.

What is the most challenging thing about photographing maternity?
Photographing pregnancy is one of my favorite types of portraiture. I believe motherhood is so incredibly beautiful and deserves to be photographed as such. Although I do not photograph weddings, I would never photograph an expecting mother any differently than I would a bride. She deserves the same beauty and grace in her images, and when it comes to maternity sessions this is of the utmost importance to me.

I would say my biggest challenge has been communicating this idea that pregnancy deserves a place in Fine Art Portraiture; and above anything deserves to be photographed period. Many women have no desire to photograph this time, but I believe that with the right photographer they would never regret it.

What is a good lesson you have learned this year in photography or in your business?
Oh I don’t think I could limit that to one answer! I feel as though everyday I learn something new about how to be a better photographer or business owner- and I hope that never changes. Let me give you my top three.
The biggest lesson I have learned over the past year is the importance of only photographing what I am passionate about, and learning to say no to the rest. Specializing was the best decision I could have made for my business. It keeps me looking forward to every portrait shoot, and because I truly love what I am creating, I am a better photographer for that client.

The second lesson that I have learned is to repeatedly think about my ideal client. There was a time where my booking rate wasn’t where I needed it to be. Instead of complaining about it, or looking at every other photographer’s website with envy, I took a detailed look at my business and focused inwardly on what I could improve. This way when clients came my way I could be ready to book them and give them an amazing experience. So I took the time to create email folders before I had the emails to fill them, a workflow chart before I had the client’s name to fill in, and creating a gorgeous welcome packet before I had the clients to send them to. I pictured my ideal mother to work with sitting down at her computer and pulling up my website. Was I speaking to her in the way I needed to as soon as she saw my home page? Was everything up to date? Was my portfolio my very best work and only what I wanted to photograph more of? When she booked me, was I adequately able to educate her about her portrait experience so that we had an incredible session? Are my products photographed beautifully so that clients will really see how special they are and want to invest in them for their home? Was I truly putting my best foot forward in every area of my business? This is a great visual exercise that I still use frequently when looking over my brand experience for my clients.

The third lesson I have learned is not have gear envy. As photographers we are in an industry where it is impossible to always have the latest equipment. There is always a new camera body, a new lens, and a new computer model that seems to be everyone’s must have. If you try to keep up, you will always feel dissatisfied with what you have. Rock what you have and charge accordingly. The only lens I owned for the first 2 years of my business was a 50mm 1:4. Work with what you have until you outgrow it’s capabilities.

If you could encourage a new photographer in one area, what would it be?
When it comes to your brand, ask yourself “why” before investing in anything. I made so many mistakes as a new photographer, buying all the latest actions and templates thinking those purchases would automatically give me a great brand and website. I bought sample albums from companies simply because a popular photographer used them, and not because I really loved them or because they fit my budget. Mistakes like these set be back financially time and time again.

I have learned that a great brand and style comes from within, not something you can buy. It may be tempting to jump ahead and pick out your new packaging from popular Pinterest boards, but spending time thinking about who your ideal client is should be what is determining all of those decisions.

What do you love most about being a photographer?
Being a photographer allows me to live a life that I love. I have found a passion in photography and running a business that I never even knew was there. I am given opportunities to travel all across the country, and create tangible heirlooms for families. I have seen the joy and healing that photography can bring to hearts and it has truly changed my own life to be a part of that. I have met some of my best friends, and some of the most incredible people through the photography industry. I can truly say that I love my job!

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I look forward to motherhood the most, and running a full-time, still successful photography business that will allow me to be home with my future children. I see myself traveling both in and out of the country, and leading unique workshops and teaching opportunities. I have a feeling the next 5 years are going to be my best yet!

About the Artist: Tiffany Farley is a Fine Art portrait photographer with clients spreading across New England and beyond. A self-taught photographer, Tiffany launched her business in 2011 and has since carved her niche in the industry through “Connection Portraits,” a unique specialization that focuses on the intimate connection that exists between just two. Currently located in New Haven, Connecticut as a live-in nanny of two, Tiffany is moving to Southern Maine this fall to pursue photography as her full time career. Tiffany is most passionate for photographing motherhood in all it’s moving forms, and is the founder and curator of the recently launched Fount Collective, a quarterly print publication and submission blog for Fine Art Motherhood portraiture.

Visit Tiffany at her WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | INSTAGRAM |  TWITTER pages

Photographer Spotlight: Marina Koslow

We are thrilled to welcome the amazing Marina Koslow  to the Rock the Shot Blog today! Take a moment to learn more about her beautiful senior photography, and be sure to visit her website. Thank you so much Marina for taking the time to share your work with us today!

Where did your inspiration for photography begin?

I began learning the basics of photography from my dad growing up. He would always take pictures of us kids and then we would develop film in a make shift dark room in our kitchen. Those memories are still some of my favorites from childhood. Once I was old enough I would borrow his camera and take pictures of my friends and the city I grew up in which is in Ukraine. It was during a hard time right after the break of Soviet Union. Photography became a small outlet for me while living in grey reality of economic depression. I didn’t know much about the technical aspects of taking photographs until years later after moving to US and picking up a DSLR.

How would you describe your photography style?

clean, classic, romantic portraiture

Did you study photography in school or are you self taught?

I am self taught. A lot of things having to do with “photography” have to be learned by practice. However I do feel that going to a photography school would give one a more artistic background as well as a better understanding of the industry and more connections for potential work.

Do you shoot Canon or Nikon, and what is your favorite lens?

I shoot medium format film cameras. My favorites at the moment are Contax 645 and Mamiya RZ. Contax comes with an 80 mm 2.0 lens and its quite magical. My 35 mm system is Nikon and I am very partial to Zeiss glass. I currently use 85 mm 1.4.

Do you have any tips for photographers on how to find the light?

Don’t be afraid of light! If you are used to diffused soft lighting in the shade it may be difficult to shoot in direct sunlight but sometimes there is no way around it. You can always play it to your advantage. I try to pay attention to the subject’s eyes as well as what’s behind me. If shooting in strong backlighting its important to have some open sky above to make sure that face is still well lit.

What is the most challenging thing about photographing seniors?

Sometimes senior girls are not confident in themselves and that translates into being awkward in front of the camera. It takes a bit of time to break that ice and I always work hard to make them feel beautiful and at ease with me.

What is a good lesson you have learned this year in photography or in your business?

Taking extra time to educate clients is always worth it! locations, outfits, timing – sometimes it means that I need to be a bit more assertive to make sure all elements add up to produce the final product expected.

If you could encourage a new photographer in one area, what would it be?

Allow yourself time to find what you love doing. It doesn’t happen overnight. Work hard and accept failures when they happen, but always try again.

What do you love most about being a photographer?

I love leaving behind memories of happiness, beauty and life.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?

That’s a hard question! I don’t like predicting the future. I would love to see myself doing what I love and maybe traveling a bit outside of photography assignments, just to have more time to shoot for myself.


About the Artist: Marina Koslow is a photographer in Bend, Oregon specializing in weddings, senior portraiture for girls and family portraits. In her free time, she enjoys exploring beautiful Central Oregon, stand up paddle boarding and winter sports.

Visit Marina at her WEBSITE | BLOG | FACEBOOK pages today

August Photo Challenge: Dance Like No One is Watching

Turn up your favorite jam and grab your camera!  This month, challenge yourself to capture an AMAZING image of the beautiful art of “DANCE“!  There are no specific rules for this challenge, you may interpret the theme in any way you wish.  Everyone is invited to participate!

Special thanks to our very generous sponsors for the FABULOUS prizes for this months challenge!

Here are the prizes you can win:

 1st Place PRIZE: “Schoolgirl” Leather Camera Bag from Ketti Handbags {$295 Value}

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

Since 2008 Ketti Handbags has been producing camera bags with as much personality and flair as the women who carry them. Instead of a camera bag that acts as a purse, we made our newest leather collection a purse that can act as a camera bag. With enough space for wallet, phone, tablet and a camera, the Schoolgirl makes bringing your camera with you simple. It also works great for use on photo shoots – with your camera around your neck, easily carry up to 3 extra lenses in this stylish bag.

2nd Place PRIZE:  Beyond the Lens Photoshop Actions & Textures + Beachwood Papers {$250 Value}

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

Photo Deal Cafe brings the power of group buying to photographers. Save up to 90% off the BEST Products and Services for Photographers.

3rd Place PRIZE16×24 Canvas from Canvas by Blossom {$137 Value}

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

Here are the details for entering your submission:

1. Create a post on your blog and include ONE photo submission for the challenge. If you like, include some fun facts about the photo, and any tips or tricks you might like to share about how you captured and/or processed your image.  For this month’s submission, the only requirement is that the image relates to “Dancing” in some way.
2. Include the Rock the Shot Button and type the link www.rocktheshotforum.com in your post. DO NOT include http://
3. You can also link your submission from public Facebook pages, Flickr, Pinterest, etc. Just be sure to include the link www.rocktheshotforum.com within your post. If you are having trouble with this method, check out our step-by-step video tutorial HERE 
4. Submit the link to your post using the InLinkz button below. You must submit the actual post link (permalink), not just your website URL. NOTE: do not include http:// in your link
5. You may submit your photo at any time during the challenge – the deadline for this month’s submission is August 31st, at 11:59pm CST.
6. The winners will be announced on Thursday, September 4th.

LEGAL STUFF: This promotion is in NO WAY sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You will NOT be notified publicly via Facebook if you are a winner. You MUST be 18 to participate. By entering this giveaway, you are providing information to Rock the Shot and NOT to Facebook. Prizes do not have cash value. There will be no returns/exchanges on any of the items.

By submitting your photo, you grant Rock the Shot permission to re-post your photo on our blog and/or Facebook page. Photo Credit will be provided.

New “Members Only” FREEBIE Packet {V40}

WOO HOO!!  The newest “Members Only” FREEBIE Packet {Volume #40} is now available for download in the forum!!  As usual, this month’s packet is filled with the most AMAZING goodies from our amazing vendors!  We want to extend a HUGE thank you for their generosity and support. Special thanks to Click and Blossom; Cherry Bloom Design; and Photographer Depot for this month’s contributions to Rock the Shot Forum members!

You can find the download link in [the Forum] under “Freebie Packets”. New members, don’t forget to download the other available issues of our “Members Only” Subscriber Packets as well! You’ll get HUNDREDS of dollars in FREE photography products.  Hurry, these packets are only available for a limited time!

Not a member of our forum yet?? JOIN TODAY, and get exclusive access to all our FANTASTIC FREEBIES!  Plus… for a limited time, save 30% off any level membership using code AGFB30 (new/inactive members only: expires on August 12, 2014).

And now….on to the goodies! You will receive the following freebies:

Exclusive Photo Overlay Collection from Click and Blossom

WEBSITE | FACEBOOK

Click and Blossom is a brand of wearable and special accessories for the daily photographer, designer, blogger, instagrammer, photography and camera lovers too. From cute accessories and clothing to digital templates and overlays. Every product is made with the purpose of celebrating the joy and art of being a photographer.

  •  Compatible with Adobe Photoshop CS and Photoshop Elements

“Back to School” Marketing Collection by Cherry Bloom Design

WEBSITE FACEBOOK

Cherry Bloom Design is a cute little husband and wife run business offering fully customizable Photoshop Templates designed with you and your clients in mind. Look professional, save time, and enjoy what you do. We sure do!
  •  Compatible with Adobe Photoshop CS and Photoshop Elements

Exclusive Cloud Overlay Pack from Photographer Depot

WEBSITE FACEBOOK

Add drama and creativity to your images with Montana’s beautiful clouds, horizons and sunsets in this EXCLUSIVE Cloud Collection from Photographer Depot.  These cards are not included in any other set.  Find more beautiful cloud overlays in our Montana Skies Cloud Overlays Volumes I and II.

Photographer Depot is stocked to the roof with everything you need to succeed in the business of photography. Our focus in on practical, affordable tools for the newer professional photographer that will boost your confidence in the office and behind the camera.

  • Photoshop CS; CC and Photoshop Elements Compatible {must allow the use of layers}

Not a member of Rock the Shot Photography Forum yet? Come on over and JOIN our fun and friendly community TODAY!  Plus… for a limited time, save 30% off any level membership using code save 30% off any level membership using code AGFB30 (new/inactive members only: expires on August 12, 2014). 

And… don’t forget to stop by these wonderful vendors websites and Facebook pages and check out all the FANTASTIC products they have to offer. Remember to download all of our currently available packets in the forum. Here is a list of all the fantastic freebies available for download.  Hurry, these packets are only available for a limited time!!

Volume 39:

  • Summer Marketing Bundle {4 templates} from Paper Lark Designs
  • Facebook Timeline Cover Bundle {6 templates} from Marketing Mall
  • “Owlsome” Texture Pack {12 Textures} from Owlsome Boutique

Volume 38:

  • EXCLUSIVE Lightroom Preset Collection {5 Presets} from Pretty Presets for Lightroom
  • “Artista” Client Welcome Packet from Squijoo Design Studio
  • Facebook Timeline Collection {4 templates}  from Bittersweet Design Boutique

Volume 37: (expires August 12, 2014)

  • 14 Piece Marketing/Branding Set from Hummingbird Press
  • Print/Blog Collage Collection from Fotovella
  • Exclusive Mini-Session Collection {4 Templates} from Prairie Sweet Boutique

Featured Vendor + Giveaway: SewTamz

Today we are featuring the amazing SewTamz Designs, maker of beautiful camera straps, covers and wristlets. Check out the fantastic options they offer, and don’t forget to enter the giveaway for a chance to win one of {3} $50.00 Gift Certificates to SewTamz Designs.

About SewTamz Designs
SewTamz Designs specializes in custom photography accessories for all photographers.   Her designs offer a stylish way to accessorize your camera – Items include camera strap covers, wrist straps and designer neck or cross-body camera straps.  Whether it’s choosing colors to match you’re branding, showing off your business logo,or adding your own monogram the possibilities are endless.

New items released TODAY!  SewTamz has created coordinating neoprene lens cases, drop-in-bags, and our new “thin” neoprene strap.  All of our products come in a variety of stylish designs and provides the comfort every photographer needs.

Beautiful classic, modern and simple designs in endless color options.

SPECIAL OFFER EXCLUSIVELY FOR ROCK THE SHOT READERS: Save 20% off using code ROCK20 at checkout.

About the Designer: Tammy is a wife and mom to two busy kids.  After leaving the corporate world as a “techie” to be a SAHM; on a whim she began designing camera straps and covers for photographer friends adding embroidery for a personal touch.  Thus trading in the corporate job for a sewing machine; SewTamz was born and now products are distributed world-wide.  Tammy enjoys creating new products that are functional and fun, has a slight addiction to fabrics, social media and Pinterest recipes.

Visit SewTamz Designs at their WEBSITE | FACEBOOK | PINTEREST | BLOG | TWITTER

Enter the Giveaway for a chance to win one of (3) $50.00 Gift Certificates to SewTamz Designs!

Hurry! Giveaway ends on Tuesday, August 12, 2014 .  Winner will be announced on Saturday, August 16, 2014. a Rafflecopter giveaway

LEGAL STUFF: This promotion is in NO WAY sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You will NOT be notified publicly via Facebook if you are a winner. You MUST be 18 to participate. By entering this giveaway, you are providing information to Rock the Shot and NOT to Facebook. Prizes do not have cash value. There will be no returns/exchanges on any of the items. Giveaway is open to US/CA residents only. 

Congratulations to Tasha Still; Kelly Smith; and Kala Howard on each winning a $50 Gift Certificate to Sew Tamz Designs! Winnersplease email me at karlen@rocktheshotforum.com in the next 48 hours to claim your prize. Thank you all for participating and have a wonderful weekend!

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