I am so excited to be kicking off our very first Inspire, Create, Be YOU interview/feature. Guest judges are chosen on their uniqueness, creating from their heart and just being them and being artistic. Those guest judges will have an interview for Inspire, Create, Be YOU series. I am so excited to introduce you to the very first Inspire, Create, Be you artist... Kelly Akers of Kelly Akers Photography. Kelly's work is nothing short of amazing. Shes definitely unique and shoots from within. Her work is moody, emotive yet dreamy and she is super inspiring. Enjoy...
1. What do you think the most important element is in your personal style? (example. Light, creativeness, perspective, story, emotion, texture, etc. What do you shoot for in your work? And what makes your work YOU?)
Oh gosh, all of the above?!? lol I am always chasing the light and love getting that magical golden light in my pictures but I think creating an image that stirs my soul is always my main goal. Hopefully others will feel it too.
My husband and girls have always inspired me and are still the ones I love photographing the most. I think the friends I have, who are also amazing photographers, push me to be a better artist. It just amazes me how many talented photographers there are and I am so happy to be friends with a lot of them. Not only are they talented, caring, and supportive but they don’t mind helping you grow and become better.
3. Is there anything specific that helped push you towards your beautiful and unique style? And if yes, what was it?
My friend and fellow photographer Ana Myer was the first person I knew that had tried freelensing. I saw the magic she created and I had to try it!
4. What is the one thing you would tell others that are trying to break away from their present shooting style to start forming their own unique work and create from their heart?
Let go of perfection; it doesn’t exist and chasing it can cripple your creativity.
5. We love to shout out to others artists here so if there was one artist who really inspired you to be the best artist you can be and really shoot for you, who would that artist be?
That would be my sister, Amber, of Lilies and Lions Photography. She has always supported me and loved my work but was never afraid to offer truthful critique of it. Plus, she is so talented she always keeps me on my toes. Sibling rivalry you know. lol
6. We love to see how hard people have worked with then and now's. And inspire other artists and beginners and show them that we all started somewhere. Can you show us a before and after of your very first work to your now work? And tell us a bit about your journey. How long have you been doing photography? When you started what did you want to shoot as opposed to what you shoot now? Most of us end up doing absolutely nothing we thought we would. How has your style and outlook changed?
I started in black and white film during college and moved to digital 2005. For a long time, I tried to get the typical family portraits that I thought people wanted but the ‘mistakes’ were usually the ones that moved me. I finally feel like I have been doing work that I love in the last couple of years. For me, I started out wanting to create art(was a fine art major in college) but got sidetracked and now I’m back to where my heart has wanted to be, or at least headed in the right direction.
7. Can you give one thought on how to stay fresh, inspired and moving forward? What helps you?
Challenge yourself! Try shooting something you don’t normally shoot, at a time you don’t normally shoot or in a challenging lighting situation. I belong to a group that does a different challenge every few weeks which is great to learn new things, grow and move forward.
8. We all want to work on something or change something within our work or journey. Anything you are working to be better towards?
I want to get better and lifestyle and documentary style photography, it’s something I have been working on.
9. What are your goals for the next year or two? Getting published, building or find a studio, traveling with your shoots, specific shoot you are trying to pull together? What are you up to?
I would love to be published or in an art show. I am also working on a project to document the adoption process of a family I know. I am super excited about that!
10. We are huge on encouraging here. Can you please pick one photographer that is just starting out that is super talented, inspiring with not a big following that is trying to get their name out or that YOU think deserves to be seen and known. There are so many out there. Let's give them a little shout out.
Can I name two? ShaTerra of Favored Photography and Alyssa of Alyssa Ahern Photography. They both went to school with my oldest daughter(wow I’m old!), have recently opened for business and are very talented.
I hope you enjoyed as much as we did. Please go show Kelly A ton of love at Kelly akers photography. Until next time, XOXO! ~Amber