Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Feature Wednesday with Holly Donovan Photo!

Holly was the winner of our 'trust' challenge a couple weeks ago.  Life has finally given her a second to breathe, and she has graciously answered our questions as well as provided us with a ton of beautiful eye candy!!

1. Please tell us about yourself...
I live in Chicago with my husband and 4 kids and live a real life full of equal amounts of beauty and tragedy. Life definitely keeps me humble. I've had some doozies the last few years, photography has been as therapeutic as my old standbys, music and wine. Coffee and the outdoors. Travel and leisure (the last are a rarity since kids)! I'm also a big plant nerd, I would love to have a conservatory type sunroom some day!

2.       Can you describe your style in 3 words? Why those words?
Some words I would use are soulful, emotive, honest because I tend to avoid embellishing a scene or individual most of the time. I like to photograph scenes as they are happening. With life being my biggest prop.

3.       What sparked your passion for photography?
 My parents took cameras everywhere we went, when we were kids. We grew up in the 70s in the days of drive through Kodak shacks which I remember being a pretty cool thing. My families photos are bound in 100s of albums stored in a buffet of my childhood home. Which reminds me that printing is so important.  I took film and darkroom classes in high school and college, started learning manual digitally much later I'm 2012.

4.       What's in your camera bag right now? Canon MarkII and my 24 mm prime. Lately I've been throwing in the Lensbaby!

5.       What is your dream shoot or project? They change all the time. I'm a chronic dreamer :) I dream about Alaskan summers. Revisiting Guatemalan villages. Documenting a 'where are they now' project about deadheads! Haha. That would be something.

6.       What are some of the misconceptions you had about photography and photographers at the beginning of your photography journey? Have they changed, and how?
That I needed to go back to school to be taken seriously. That the competition would consume me. They have changed by me learning and reflecting that at the end of the day I am shooting for me and me only and I'm in competition with no one except for who I was yesterday.

7.       What advice would you give to newbie photographers? What advice do you wish you'd been given at the very beginning?

To stay as far away from social media as possible with regards to photography until you have a solid foundation of technical ability and creative vision. All it does is distract you from who you are and the how's and whys you create. Why would you want your work to look like someone else's even in the most subtle way? And if you are doing it now, stop. For your own good or you'll drown in the sea of other photographers doing the same. When you are confident in who you are, play along, submit, etc. There is a wonderful community out there with it's positives and negatives. Just find your personal balance. And indulge in photography of the masters, even the ones less known. There's amazing stuff to be seen! Gain inspiration from living life. No one can take that from you. Peace, love and 2.8!

You can find more of Holly's beautiful work here:

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