Meet Haley Bashlor Lamb, currently located in Georgia, but has a passport “itchin'” to take her anywhere! Haley focuses on capturing the natural connections between families using her left eye and her Canon camera. She does not use a second-shooter, however, she has a “great sales consultant”.
Photo by Christine Hall
Describe the moment you decided it was time to pursue this as a career?
For years I’d been so scared to open a business because my personality doesn’t work well with all the little details and legalities of running a business. But, I knew it was what I was supposed to do when I couldn’t imagine myself doing anything else! I was also charging people and felt like if I was going to ask people to pay me then I needed to be honest with the government about what I was
doing! The moment was a whirlwind of excitement nerves galore!
20mm, f3.2, 400ISO, 1/400
What is one thing you’ve learned so far that has proven most valuable?
oh gosh! Probably a quote that I saw from Mike Colon, “You have no competition because there is only one of you on this earth…” Comparing myself to others is one of the worst things I can do! All my insecurities leak out when I wonder if I would “ever be as good as so and so”. It’s so important to understand that if the Lord has planned this job for me, then nothing can hold back my art, clients, and business!
24-70, f4.0, 400ISO, 1/160
What makes you different from everyone else?
I really feel like my passion shines through my personality. I’m passionate about people and art, so when I mix the two together it’s a win-win situation. You can hire a number of people to produce a good image for you; but, when someone helps you feel comfortable in front of the camera, the natural beauty in real moments can’t be replaced by a good pose.
50mm, f1.8, 640ISO, 1/320
Who is your one favorite up-and-coming photographer?
I don’t know much about her, but I love LyraLyra.com
One item you can’t live without?
Probably my Mac computer family because it gives me access to the world through the internet and has always performed in tip top shape. Let’s just face it, the Apple brand is so scrumptious!
Your best (favorite) bokeh image and why?
50mm, f1.8, 200ISO, 1/320
I love the clear distinction between the subject and background here. I feel like the Bokeh here acts like little flittering rays of light around the subject. I absolutely love Bokeh and STRIVE to obtain a whole lot of it on photo shoots. I especially go for it when I do close-ups, which are my favorite type of shot!
Hands down, the Bible! I can’t get enough of it! I also enjoy this author–> www.reginafranklin.com
Nacho Libre and some movies with Kate Hudson
24-70, f4.0, 200ISO, 1/1000
Where do you find inspiration?
I look for it everywhere! Whenever I find an awesome location, ideas swirl around in my head until I can shoot there. I love looking through family and parenting magazines. And, of course, I’m always inspired by other photographers.
What do you think is the most valuable aspect of your business?
I’ve chosen to concentrate on working with families in my business. I’ve been learning the necessity of specializing in what you do. I started 7 years ago photographing weddings, and while I so appreciate the clients and friends who trusted me with their big day, I feel like I work best with the family unit (including couples, dogs, and Seniors). So, I give 100% in working to improve that area. While I love shooting events, I prefer kids birthday parties or family-centered community events.
24-70, f3.5, 400ISO, 1/250
If you could second shoot with anyone, who would it be?
Well, I’ve already been blessed to shoot with one of my favorite photographers (christinehallphotography.com). So, now I would DEFINITELY go with Tara Whitney–I’d love to pick her brain!
Are you a member of any organizations and have you won any awards?
Not yet. Some of my near goals are to be a part of WPPI and Modernphotographers.com— as soon as they open up registration for family photographers (or, if they decided to go ahead and invite me, *wink wink*) Also, does flickr.com count?
24-70, f5.6, 400ISO, 1/100
What did you have to do to actually take the leap? Did you have any hoops to jump through?
It took a lot of trusting in the Lord (and still does!). I’ve always been used to making steady income and to depend on myself to give myself a paycheck is scary! My husband is one of the reasons I can follow this dream (his support is through the roof!) and I had to go through all the steps in registering my business, finding a CPA, getting a sales tax number….all the not-so-fun-confusing stuff! Oh yeah, I also had to quit my job as a private school teacher (yeah, that’s a nice size hoop to jump through!)
85mm, f1.8, 400ISO, 1/640
Do you have suggestions for others trying to make the transition?
The thing I would suggest is knowing that being a professional means so much more than taking good pictures. Having a good knowledge of business and seeking out mentors is always a good idea. A mentor can walk you through the places where you feel like your head is spinning. I’ve been so thankful to have people point out their mistakes in starting a business and giving me a push in the
right direction. Above all, don’t let your dreams die because of fear!
What is the biggest or most creative thing you do/have done to draw new clients?
I want to give my clients the whole experience. I so enjoy taking time to package my products and prints and hope my clients feel as though they are receiving a personal gift at delivery time. Because word of mouth is so important, I feel like I must follow through on my word. If my current clients don’t see that I’m reliable, they have no reason to refer me out. Also, in trying to reach a new target market in 2009, I’m donating services and gift certificates to community events where I’d like to see myself working more often.
50mm, f2.8, 400ISO, 1/50
What’s your idea of the perfect photographer networking “date”?
I’m so new to the networking thing! My idea of any good “date” is over coffee! Eventually maybe going out and shooting together a
subject/practicing a technique that we’ve been interested to learn more about.
24-70, f3.5, 500ISO, 1/200