Feature Friday - PhotoCaptiva
Have you ever met someone before and thought to yourself..."ya, I'm really going to like this person...I can already tell and I don't even know them" ...well that was exactly how I felt after meeting Rosie and Jamie for the first time. Back in my days at Henry's Cameras, Rosie and Jamie were regular customers...two of the nicest we had. They were just starting out their professional photography journey in 2008 and shopping for some new and improved gear, but you could tell even then that they were going to achieve great things. In the time that I've known them, they have become two of the most well known and sought after photographers in Sudbury, On.
Specializing in wedding and portrait photography, Rosie and Jamie have grown their business to such a point that Rosie is able to stay home with the family...their large family at that...while Jamie works within the game development industry on the side. Now when I say large family, I mean by today's standards Rosie and Jamie have well exceeded the usual 2.5 kids. Their family has blossomed over the years to include their 4 beautiful daughters, 3 handsome sons and most recently, their 2 not-so-little fur babies. Being a new mum myself, I can't imagine what it must be like running a full time photography business, working full time and raising 7 children...but these two manage to do it with style and grace.
When I sent a message to Rosie asking if PhotoCaptiva would be interested in being part of the Feature Fridays blog, I got an incredibly warm and supportive response. Rosie was so very sweet and answered all of my questions, even though she was tremendously busy with the Sudbury Bridal Show. I personally love everything that these two have captured over the years and am certain that 2016 will be yet another great year for their family and their business.
So continue reading and learn a little more about my dear friends Rosie and Jamie and their photography business PhotoCaptiva...
⦁ How old were you when you started your photography journey?
Rosie was 10 years old, shooting with film on her parent’s camera – which later became her own. She moved to digital cameras in 2008, with an occasional fun shoot on her film camera. Jamie has worked in the video gaming industry for 10 years but only started shooting with cameras in 2008. His video game software engineering background was a perfect mesh to photography.
⦁ What style of photography do you enjoy most?
We love the storytelling aspects – weddings and portraits. At a wedding, we get to meet the people most precious to the couple, and form bonds with them on a very important day. This permits us to tell a story, their story, in a visual way. During a portrait session, we get to know the client in order to get their best selves and expressions. It is a wonderful “challenge” for us that brings much satisfaction when we finally capture a little bit of them on camera.
⦁ What would be your dream project?
Rosie would love a few different things. One would be to shoot some weddings in Europe (Scotland, Ireland and Iceland are at the top of the list). Another would be to photograph dancers in a nature setting. There is something so magical about dancers’ quiet strength and the gentle details of nature. Jamie also loves nature, so his goal would be to trail walk, mountain bike and photograph while travelling.
⦁ What is one of your long term goals? (business/photography related)
One set of goals is to never stop learning, to adapt and change with the business and to continue photographing for a very long time.
⦁ How did you choose your business name?
As a newly married couple, we took a Latin course together at the university. Many years later, we still love the language and when it came time to figure out our name, we wanted to incorporate a little piece of our Latin language. We found “captiva”, which is the base for “captivating” and “capture”, to be appropriate and flow well with “photo”. We went through many iterations of names, even considering just our last name (although Parent Photography sounded too much like a business specialized in families/children). In the end, we settled on PhotoCaptiva and it felt right for us. Capturing subjects and captivating emotions are at the base of what we love to do in our business.
⦁ How do you use social media/internet to promote yourself/business?
Social media has gotten much tougher over the last few years. Facebook used to help small businesses grow quite well, but they have restrained us with many algorithms and asking the business to pay for exposure. We understand their stance, but it definitely is a challenge. We now use Instagram to combine the business side and the personal side of us (as a couple, as a family and as individual). There are great resources to learn more about social media Just off the top of our head, Gary Vaynerchuck , Brené Brown, Michael Gerber, Seth Godin are some of the authors who have done a great job at explaining many aspects of the business, with some specializing in social media and advertising. At the end of the day, we apply what we know and try not to worry about it too much. Word of mouth is still the best way to get our names out there – along with fantastic blogs that want to get to know us.
⦁ Have you been featured in any publications?
We have been featured in Sudbury Living Wedding Magazine (twice), Muskoka Weddings Magazine, The Wall Street Journal and a number of times in local newspapers for the events we have photographed. We considered submitting to various things (like The Knot, Style me Pretty, Wedding Wire, etc) but it is very time consuming to send portfolios to them as they each have strict guidelines, and we have no office manager (besides Rosie). Even though we haven’t taken the time to submit officially to more international publications, we have to say it was very exciting to get recognized in those magazines/newspapers.
⦁ What kind of gear do you use?
We are Nikon photographers. We have used Nikon since our very first DSLR purchase (and my film cameras). The ergonomics fit well in both Rosie’s smaller hands and Jamie’s larger hands. The buttons and menus worked well for us and we absolutely love the crisp sharpness of our lenses. We’ve never had focus issues or bad experiences with Nikon.
⦁ What programs do you use during post-processing?
We use a combination of Adobe Lightroom (for sorting and quick adjustments) and Adobe Photoshop (for more intensive touch-ups). All in all we believe in “getting it right in camera”, so that adjustments take much less time. Editing is necessary to digital photography, but the less time in front of the computer, the more time we can spend with our children.
⦁ How do you educate yourself to take better photos?
For betterment, we had watched many tutorials, took online courses, studied with the New York Institute of Photography and Rosie has attended a wedding workshop with Nik Pekridis. We firmly believe that you don’t stop leaning with photography, as it shifts and grows with years of experience.