Inspiring Interview | featuring Stephanie Fisher Photography

Our Inspiring Photographer Interview for this week features Stephanie Fisher Photography. Stephanie is one of our very own talented LSI Pro Members. She is a natural light photographer based in the Birmingham/Central Alabama area and her natural light studio is located in Alabaster, Alabama. You can follow more of her inspiring work on her Blog and Facebook.  Please meet Stephanie…

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A Few Words From Stephanie Fisher Photography

I’m a portrait photographer based in Birmingham, Alabama and I specialize in newborn, baby and family photography. I have an awesome husband, Chad, and an amazingly smart and sweet daughter, Hannah, who is 9 years old and my total mini-me. :) We love all things Disney and our favorite getaway is Seaside, Florida. Our dream is to one day have a little beach house on 30A!

If there was one thing you would want us to know about you, what would it be?

I absolutely love my job. Being a photographer and having my own studio was my dream job and I feel so blessed to be able to do something I love so very much. It also allows me the flexibility with my schedule to revolve around my world- my little girl, Hannah. I also got married in March and we had our honeymoon at Aulani in Hawaii!

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Studio, on location or both? If you have a studio, please include an image of your space.

I shoot both studio and on-location. I have an adorable cottage studio that I have been in for almost six years now and it provides a fabulous indoor as well as outdoor space for sessions.

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Natural light, studio light or both? Preference?

For the longest time I was solely natural light but I bought a studio light about three years ago and I love having it for those gloomy, rainy days as well as for my beanbag posing for newborn portraits for consistent lighting.

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Share with us your all time favorite image and why.

This. I took this on September 14, 2014 on my great-grandmother’s 97th birthday. These are my great-grandparents and they raised me- they took me in when I was six years old. My great-grandmother passed away 2 weeks after I took this photo and I lost my great grandfather in June of this year. This was the very last image I ever captured of the two of them together and it sums up their love and how I want to remember them so well.

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What inspired you to be a photographer?

Capturing memories for people. I do not have many photos of my childhood and I have strived to document every little thing so we’ll have those memories to look back on and I love being able to help families document their fleeting moments as well with portraits that can be passed down for generations.

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Would you consider yourself a hobbyist or a paid professional?

Paid professional

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Is photography your full time career?

Yes. At one time I was working full time in the investments industry and doing photography on the side but when I got laid off from my job (the Monday after Christmas in 2008) I decided to take a leap of faith and go full-time with my photography career and knock on wood I hit the ground running and never looked back! This is definitely my dream job and I’m enjoying every moment of it.

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What type of session do you look forward to the most vs what type of session you most often do?

Gosh, I don’t know if there is one particular type that I look most forward to- I, quite honestly, get excited (and nervous!) for each and every session still! The sessions I shoot most frequently are baby sessions newborn-one year.

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On average, how many sessions do you have per month?

On average I shoot about 15 sessions per month (a little more in the fall for holiday season and minis)

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What has been your most memorable session and why?

I flew to Texas to photograph the birth of one of my best friend’s twins in July of last year. We had originally planned on me coming out to do their newborn portraits around 2 weeks old but we had a last minute game plan change. I was so thankful that I had been there for the birth and was able to capture portraits of the boys together because one of the sweet baby boys passed away from SIDS only 10 short days later. Again a reason that my job is so important to me and that I’m able to capture these moments and memories that they can hold on to.

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What has been the best source of information along your photography journey (workshop, online forums, classroom, mentor, etc)?

Online forums, like LSI, have been an ongoing great wealth of information.

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What has been the biggest source of inspiration in your work?

My daughter, Hannah is a huge inspiration for me. When I shoot sessions I always think about what I would like to have of my own child and hope to capture that for others. Other than that just every day life inspires me from seeing certain locations to the way the light pops through the trees or falls on a subject. There is inspiration everywhere.

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Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?

I’m a Nikon girl. My favorite studio lens is the 35mm 1.4 and my favorite outdoor portrait lens is the 70-200 2.8

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How would you define your post processing style?

I tend to keep my editing to a minimum. I love a clean, bright and classic portrait.

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What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business?

The advice I would give to a new photographer is to realize there is A LOT of work that goes into this business other than just taking pictures. Make a business plan and get a handle on all of the in’s and out’s of running your business from bookkeeping to paying taxes and your general workflow.

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What is your favorite and least favorite part of owning your own photography business?

I think most everyone will say this but I love being my own boss! I love the flexibility of making my schedule and being able to spend time with my little girl. Even though I work a ton of hours every week- it truly doesn’t feel like WORK because I love what I do so much. Least favorite? All of the bookkeeping and administration things- I feel like I constantly have a to-do list a million miles long!

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Who is the most inspirational photographer in your life?

Oh my- I don’t know if I can name just one. There are so many wonderful photographers but I do know my first newborn inspiration came from Kelley Ryden and Tracey Raver.

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Please include a funny outtake or blooper image from a session…

I just adore this family. Keeping it real! J

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And finally, please briefly describe your photography style for our readers.

I love a good, classic portrait. I don’t use a lot of props and focus more on just the baby and with families I love to capture the real moments and connections with the family.

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A Few Fun Questions:

Favorite TV show? Right now- Big Brother! I love Blackish, Modern Family, Big Bang Theory and anything on HGTV!
Favorite movie? The Notebook or Beaches
Favorite musician/band? I don’t think I could name just one! My favorite station is the 90s music- anything from rap to alternative!
What is your favorite food? pizza
What is your favorite beverage? Sweet tea (I’m a southern girl!)
Your favorite item of clothing? My Matilda Jane cupcake dress
Your go-to pair of shoes? flip flops or ballet flats
What is one word you catch yourself saying too often? Like!