We went to college for photography at Tyler School of Art
in Philadelphia. I grew up in Philadelphia and Amanda is from Hilton Head, South Carolina. At first, I had every intention to become a web designer, and photography was just a hobby. Quickly, it reversed and I became involved in portrait and environmental photography. Upon graduating, I worked a number of freelance jobs for magazines, art institutions, advertising companies, and various brands. I was also photographing weddings when I could. It took awhile before I honed in on what I was really good at. Currently I specialize in wedding, portrait, interior and small scale commercial photography.
Growing up and living in Philadelphia my whole life has given me an advantage of really knowing the ins and outs of the city. I’ve lived in so many different neighborhoods, and worked all over the city. Philadelphia is really special because it’s a big city with a small town feel. Wherever I am in the city, I run into people I know. Yet at the same time, there are so many places I have yet to explore. Because Philadelphia is a prominent historical city, there are stories to be told throughout every building, every cobblestone street, every neighborhood. Small details in architecture can determine the date/era the building was built and what it was used for. I love learning about the past use of buildings before they were turned into living spaces, restaurants, galleries, etc. My studio, for instance, used to be a cabinet making factory.
In 140 characters or less, how would you describe your interior photography aesthetic?
“Vintage Modern.” I appreciate the craftsmanship of the mid-century vintage, and also the clean lines of more modern pieces.
What’s your business mantra?
Love what you do!
How do you market your photography services to interior designers?
I’ve worked with a couple of architecture firms in the past so I was able to develop a portfolio of interior work. From there, I’ve had a few companies connect with me for interior photographs of their shops and studios, and eventually began working with Apartment Therapy photographing House Tours. As far as individual designers, they hear of me mostly through word of mouth.
Who are some interior designers you admire and enjoy working with?
Photo by Love Me Do Photography, Design by Mix and Match Design (taken for Apartment Therapy)
What makes it easy to shoot an interior space? What makes it difficult?
Lots of even natural light really make for great interior shots. Rooms with little to no natural light or that are narrow make it difficult to photograph. I end up having a difficult time with many interiors in Philadelphia because so many houses are narrow row homes with very few windows. I have to come equipped with a very wide angle lens in order to get full-room shots.
In your opinion, how important is a good-looking portfolio to the success of an interior design firm’s growth and reputation?
I think the visual portfolio is very important to the success of an interior designer’s business. It’s the first thing consumers see and the portfolio needs to wow them.
If you could make a PSA to all interior designers regarding photographing their portfolio, what would you say?
It’s really important to have good quality, consistent photographs that highlight your skills as a designer. Designing is not only about the major pieces of furniture you outfit a space with, but also the placement of items, quality of light, flow of the space, and the general usefulness to the client. Your portfolio should reflect all of those aspects as well be consistent from project to project.
How do you typically prep an interior designer for a photoshoot?
I like to see a floor-plan if possible of the space so that I know ahead of time the placement of windows and doors, and the direction in which they face. This will let me know what time of day would be best to photograph a space. On occasion, I might do a walk-though with the designer or the owner of the property in person or over skype/facetime. I also make sure to go over a few things such as: remove any clutter, wipe down all surfaces for things like smudges and fingerprints, etc. Before I start photographing, I have the designer show me around and point out any of their favorite pieces, anything that could tell a “story”, and what they are most proud of.
What are some tips of best practices you can offer interior designers for making the most out of a photoshoot?