Where do I even begin…I met Sarah of Uniquely You Photography a few years back on a photography forum and I was immediately in awe of her gorgeous work. I was used to being drawn to natural light photography and honestly, when I saw Sarah’s newborn work, assumed she used natural light. When I found out she was a studio photographer, I was shocked. Her lighting is just gorgeous, pure perfection really. She has completely mastered lighting and it most definitely shows in her work. But to make it even more unfair, she also rocks natural light, outdoor images. No fair, right?! Nobody is allowed to be that talented, I am sure of it.
Well, lucky for us here at LSI, we get to share her amazing work and her fun loving self with you guys today. The other really good news is that Sarah is instructing one of our featured workshops right here on Learn Shoot Inspire! We are so honored to have her as part of our team! Sarah will be teaching our “Newborn Sessions: Start to Finish” workshop and it is going to be absolutely amazing. If you are interested in being a part of this workshop, make sure to join LSI here and sign up for her class once you are a registered member. Sign ups began yesterday and it’s already about sold out! So please hurry on over and get yourself registered, you will not regret it! And finally, please meet Sarah!
A little bit about Sarah: Easily recognized for the wonderous color and rich textures displayed in her images, Sarah Ulrich is known for her fresh and fun approach to photographing newborns, babies, children, and their families. She has a Bachelor of Fine Art degree in Photography & Graphic Design, and pursued photography as a career after the birth of her third daughter. Sarah has been married for 9 years, has 3 girls, ages 10, 7.5, and 6, and runs her business, Uniquely You Photography, in Lincoln, Nebraska.
1. If there was one thing you would want us to know about you, what would it be?
That I absolutely LOVE my job and am humbled every session that my clients choose me to capture these wonderful moments for them.
2. Share with us your favorite image and why.
I don’t really have a favorite image of all time. My favorite image of right this minute would be these 2 sisters . I just love the colors, and lighting, and they were some of my very first clients and are just adorable. Tomorrow I’m sure I’ll have a new favorite!
3. What inspired you to be a photographer?
I’ve always had a love of art, and after documenting everyday moments of my own kids, I was compelled to want to capture that for other parents too.
4. How long was the transition from hobbyist to paid professional and how long have you officially been taking paid clients?
In March, I will have had my business for 7 years! I briefly worked for another photographer and when that didn’t work out, pursued my own business, so I charged people from the start.
5. What type of session do you look forward to the most (maternity, newborn, child, family, etc) and why?
I could never pick a favorite. I love newborns for the obvious reasons. I adore 6 months because they are so curious and just getting to that social age so anything I say or do is captivating. Age 2-3 is another favorite because I can just interact with them naturally and they each have their own mannerisms and expressions. They are such genuine individuals, and I like a bit of a challenge. I really enjoy shooting families too.
6. On average, how many sessions do you have a month?
7. What has been your most memorable session and why?
Hmm…I’m not sure one stands out above the rest. I’ve done a ton of NICU sessions and those are always rewarding.
8. Are you formally taught or self taught? And what has been the best source of information along this journey (workshop, online forums, classroom, mentor, etc)?
I have a BFA in photography & graphic design. I try to attend conferences regularly as a part of ongoing education and when I first started out, I soaked in everything I could from online forums.
9. What has been the biggest source of inspiration in your work?
I think just mainly my clients and wanting them to be able to look at a photograph I’ve taken and have it be a true representation of their child.
10. Nikon or Canon? Favorite lens?
CANON! My go to lens for 95% of my outdoor sessions is the Canon 135L. The bokeh is so dreamy & delicious that it me giddy. Indoors with studio work I use the Canon 50mm 1.4.
11. RAW or jpg and why?
RAW, because I prefer to have total control over processing my images.
12. Do you use Lightroom, Photoshop, both or other?
I use Adobe Camera Raw (ACR) and Photoshop.
13. What is one piece of advice you would like to offer a new photographer looking to start their own business?
Taking the photos is actually really only about 10% of our time. The rest of the time is spent running a business. Learn how to run a business and price yourself to make a profit…because the point of having a business (and working our tail off) is ultimately to be successful, right?! Don’t determine your prices from what you think people will pay, sit down and really figure out how much you want to make, how many hours you want to work, and how much it takes to run your business…if YOU don’t value your work, your clients won’t either.
14. What is your favorite and least favorite part of owning your own photography business?
The favorite part has to be that I am my own boss! Least favorite would be the constant juggling of work and family.
15. Who is the most inspirational photographer in your life?
I’ve always really admired the work of Sally Mann.
16. Do you see yourself as a photographer many years down the road?
Yes, I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.
17. And finally, please briefly describe your photography style for our readers.
Fresh, fun, and colorful.
Now for a few fun questions:
1. what is your favorite food?
I could pretty much eat pasta every day of my life.
2. what is your favorite beverage? Soda: Dr. Pepper Alcoholic: Bud Light
3. your favorite item of clothing? A good fitting pair of jeans…or several.
4. your go to pair of shoes? I am all about comfort!
5. what is one word you catch yourself saying too often? “Seriously?!”
Thank you Sarah, for this amazing interview, for sharing your gorgeous work and for being a part of the LSI team. We know your workshop is going to be a HUGE source of inspiration and a wonderful learning experience for all involved. We can’t wait to see it all unfold. We are sure lucky to have you here! I am sure our readers and forum members all agree! You rock!