Ashley. Tell us ABOUT yourself.
I began my photography career at Palisades High school in my junior year. As a senior I took on several internships were a got the opportunity to shoot a few magazine spreads and covers. From there I pursued a career in fine art and started my business along side of my high school sweetheart who is now my husband of 5 years. Being a student athelete on scholarship and an art major I learned how to work my business around my busy schedule and now 10 years into it I am proud to say that I wouldn't have chosen a different career for myself. My mom always told me "Do what you love and you will never have to call it work."
Our readers would love to get to know you more Ashley. Tell us about yourself, what is unique about you?
I am a young entrepreneur, wife and mother of three awesome little guys. I have always had a passion for art and it has worked out in my benefit
Ashley, what are your passion and aspiration in life? How did you start as a Photographer?
My passion is to help others see and feel their true beauty. I feel that through my photos people gain a self confidence that they didn't have. My godfather actually introduced me to photography at a young age and in high school, after having a huge breakdown about not wanting to play sports anymore (which I had done my whole life) I decided I need to find my true passion and it was photography. After my God father passed my senior year in high school I really became more passionate about it. I used everything he taught me and imparted into me over years to get were I am today.
Who is your inspiration in life Ashley? How do you keep inspired?
My inspiration is my family. I am surrounded many a huge support system. My family he always stood by my side and encouraged me to keep going. My husband is also a huge support for me. We have been doing this together since high school and we have had ups and downs in our business but we have never given up on each other or what we started.
We all make mistakes Ashley, we wish we could take back. Please tell us about a time being a Photographer , you wish you’d handled a situation differently with a colleague.
Wow. I learned early that it's our job to please the client. There was one time a client wrote down their mailing address for products to be sent to them & somehow there was an error with the address. I informed them that the products were sent to the address that was written, they blamed me for the error, me in pride told them it's clearly not my fault because it not my hand writing ... you wrote it down for me. They got angry, somewhat cursed me out and I never spoke to them again. I could have easily mailed another disc to them but after all that I was like heck naw lol. Now that I think back on that that situation made me even more humble and I am no were near as prideful as the teenager I once was.
Ashley ,when you’re working with a large number of clients, it’s tricky to deliver excellent service to them all. As a Photographer, how do you go about prioritizing your clients’ needs?
I typically have a go to person ( usually the person who hires me) I ask before the event that I am appointed a person who I can communicate with and who can communicate to the large number of people. That has been a huge success for me especially when shoot events like weddings. I also ask for a shot list (if different from the one I provide them) so that I can guarantee that I am getting the shots my client would like. I have been blessed to work with people who understand the needs of a photographer as well.
Please tell us Ashley, about a time you had to be very strategic in order to meet all your top priorities as a Photographer?
I have a contract with a dance company and I end up shooting 300 kids sometime within 2 hrs. The very first time I shot them I brought a person to handle package slips, getting the students in order, keeping a flowing system while I take the shots and record the numbers by the children's names. I also had 2 people with me to translate because most of the parents didn't speak English. I thought it was going to be a lot more crazy than it actually was.
Ashley, please give us an example of a time when you were able to successfully persuade someone to see things your way at work.
Here was one time when I was shooting a wedding and I took the bridal party for shots after the ceremony. The location the bride and groom wanted the lighting was horrible (the sun was actually setting and the pictures were going to be darker from that angle) I suggested a location right behind were we were shooting and to compromise I told them I would do all of the shots they want at the spot the my chose and would they mind if we do the same shots at the location I picked (literally 10 feet away from each other) they agreed and they were able to see the difference in the shots afterwards. I had to make sure they received quality images, that's my job.
Ashley please tell us about your proudest professional accomplishment as a Photographer. There might be many, but there is always this proudest moment that you just want to share to everyone. What is it and why?
The proudest moment I had was seeing my work on a billboard and on TV. We consider ourselves a really small business because it mainly me and my husband doing all the work, but to see that little ole us made it somewhere big was awesome and very humbling.
Ashley, please give us an example of a time you were able to be creative with your work. What was exciting or difficult about it?
I love being creative with my work I actually miss the freedom to do so more. My junior year in college I experimented with a classmate and paint. I had her wear all black, we brought in different types of paint and she placed it on her face and body. We used a huge industrial fan for effects and we shot. It was really cool and different for me (I didn't think someone would want to be paint; but now that's very in)
What advice would you give to the people who wants to be successful as a Photographer?
Don't be afraid to ask for help. There are to many people wanting to take credit for stuff and not want to ask for help but mentors are everything. Learn from someone's mistakes and victories.
Are you looking for collaboration with fashion talents, brands and creatives? If yes, please state below what type of collaboration you are looking for?
Yes I am looking to collaborate with all type of creatives. I want to work with more fashion and urban brands
Now for the best part Ashley! Please upload 5-10 photos so we can get to see your work.
Ashley Byrd @a.n.sphotography