The Arts, specifically music and photography, have always been a passion. Growing up I spent weekends at my Grandpa’s ranch and would hang around him while he photographed landscapes; He was able to produce the most incredible landscape shots with just a simple point and shoot disposable camera. That was when I first learned that it doesn’t matter what you shoot on, it matters how you shoot it. Despite being busy with school activities, I also had the privilege of working for my mentor Gene Russell (who I eventually acquired this studio from and renamed Cripps Photography). After several years working as the second photographer and studio manager for Gene Russell Photography, I decided that I needed to go and get a real education and try my hand at something different. Wise thoughts of someone in her early twenties and with a 2-year-old baby at home!
Off I went and I started to climb the corporate ladder while getting a formal education. After six years, two promotions and an M.B.A., while enjoying photography as a hobby, I woke up one morning and asked myself, “Is this all there is?” Around that time, I was presented with an incredible opportunity to return to my roots at what is now my studio and I jumped at the chance and dove right back in.
Is it like riding a bike? No. Photography is ever changing and there is always a new trend, lighting technique, camera advancement, and editing option being released. That's why I am a member of PPA (Professional Photographers of America) and constantly attending a variety of workshops and educational events within the industry to continue my education and advance my techniques and skills. I have found though that the constant in photography lies with the people you photograph.
Having someone stand in front of my lens and getting to chat with them and compose an incredible image for them; that’s IT for me, that’s the sweet spot. It’s the interaction between a husband and wife, a family, a young couple in love, a child discovering something for the first time or just innocently playing - those moments are what makes life amazing. The images I get to create, the moments that I get to be a part of, and the emotions I get to witness- that’s my why.
Collectively, I have more than 15 years of experience behind the lens and in studio operations. I am a lover of variety and though I am drawn to women, children and newborn photography- I love heading on location to a school for a day and seeing 700+ new little faces, or heading out to a canyon to photograph a family who hasn’t all been together in 3 or more years, or even getting a sports team in my studio to photograph for a custom composite. It’s ALL amazing and fun and interesting! How lucky am I to get to do this?
Occasionally you will see my not so little man next to me (he's now 6'2), assisting with a reflector or carrying my gear. He’s even picked up the camera to take pictures of his mom a couple times. Most often, you will just see me - with a pink floral gear bag on my back, camera strap across my body and a smile on my face because I am truly happy and enjoying getting to visit with my clients for a time and get to know them. If I haven’t seen you on the other side of my lens yet- I can’t wait to meet you. And if I have, I can’t wait to see you again.
YOU are my why, and I couldn’t be more grateful for that!
Photo Credit: Gene Russell