Govinda Jaya Photography – Chico, CA

Meet Govinda, a wedding and portrait photographer in California who shoots Canon with her right eye.  She shoots RAW in manual or aperture priority mode and uses a few actions for sharpening and contrast.


Describe the moment you decided it was time to pursue this as a career?
That is easy!  The first week of my first photography class in college.  I took beginning black and white…I was hooked!

ISO 400, 1/320, f/2.8, 70-200 @ 200

What is one thing you’ve learned so far that has proven most valuable?
2 things…how to use my equipment and how to interact with my clients…making them comfortable and making the picture taking process fun and easy.  Learning how to pose people and get them to do what is in your head can be quite challenging in the beginning.

What makes you different from everyone else?
I am me!  My style is me…it is always evolving but one thing that stays the same is that my intention is to create beautiful timeless images that are just as beautiful in 50-100 years as they are right now.

ISO 160, 1/125, f/8, 24-70 @ 46mm

Who is your one favorite up-and-coming photographer?
Hmmm…so many…but the one who first comes to mind is Sarah Q…she is amazing and fun and creative.

One item you can’t live without?
Just one?   I guess my bed…it is so comfortable!  Although if I didn’t have it I am sure I would live…just more uncomfortable.

Your best bokeh image and why?

ISO 400, 1/250, f/3.2, 70-200 @ 200mm

Because this little man is sooooo cute!  I just want to squeeze him and kiss his little cheeks!  I also love the “circles of confusion” as my favorite photography instructor called them.

Favorite book?
I Know This Much is True ~ Wally Lamb

Favorite movie?
So so many to choose from!  I guess if I have to pick just one it would be Dirty Dancing…BUT…following very close are Terms of Endearment, The Breakfast Club and Butterflies are Free.

ISO 400, 1/800, f/2.8, 24-70 @ 52mm

Where do you find inspiration?
Everywhere!  In nature, from other photographers, from new places I have never been before.

What do you think is the most valuable aspect of your business?
Loving what I do and a great attention to detail.


ISO 250, 1/250, f/4, 24-70 @ 43mm

Do you use a second shooter?
Yes, when shooting a wedding.

How would you recommend that someone wanting to second shoot with you go about getting the gig?

ISO 160, 1/125, f/8, 24-70 @ 46mm

If you could second shoot with anyone, who would it be?
Linnea Lenkus…she is an amazing portrait photographer in the Los Angeles area.  I love her work.  Simple, timeless and beautiful!

Are you a member of any organizations and have you won any awards?
I have won a couple awards from shows that I have entered.  The one that I was so flattered and surprised by was a Peoples Choice Award.  There were so many amazing pieces in the show and mine was picked.  That felt great!


ISO 400, 1/100, f/3.5, 24-70 @ 70mm

What did you have to do to actually take the leap?  Did you have any hoops to jump through?
I don’t think I took a leap.  I gradually started my business.  Of course I started shooting for free for friends and family do portraits and maternity sessions.  Then a family friend was getting married and she asked me to shoot her wedding.  I was very weary since I had never shot a wedding.  She really wanted me to do it so I asked Denise Neufeld a local wedding photographer if she would help me.  She did!  Thank goodness…I was so nervous.  The pictures came out pretty darn good so I kept at it.

Do you have suggestions for others trying to make the transition?
I guess the smartest thing to do is be patient. Don’t put yourself in debt buying all the latest and greatest lenses and gadgets all at once.  Buy when you have the cash.  Also buy top of the line lenses so you don’t grow out of them as your business and skills grow.


ISO 160, 1/2000, f/2.8, 100mm

What is the biggest or most creative thing you do/have done to draw new clients?
I think the best thing I have done is getting my images out where my target people/market is going to see them.  I have my images on display in retail baby and maternity stores.  That has been great.

Are you for or against advertising (paid or free)?  If for, who have you had the most success with?
I am for advertising that does not break the bank.  As in the question above…get your images out where the people you are trying to market to will see them.

ISO 100, 1/200, f/10, 24-70 @ 24mm

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One Response to Govinda Jaya Photography – Chico, CA

  1. Nice post. Haven’t thought of alot of these points before. Will come back and bookmark your site for future reference.

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