When we were looking into the next photographer to do a spotlight on, there was no better place to go than Lisa Matthis Photography. We fell in love with some winter shots she did with our pom hat, and we have always loved her work!
Her interview is amazing, and she has some great advice for photographers everywhere. She covered the importance of the photography community working together and lifting each other up. We admire that amazing spirit and her supportive nature!
One thing we have really noticed with these spotlight interviews, is that a supportive life partner is everything for some of these amazing women. Round of applause for the great partners out there!
Let us get on with our spotlight interview with Lisa Matthis Photography.
What made you decide you wanted to become a photographer and how long have you been in business?
I have always loved babies, even as a little girl I found myself mesmerized by every little being I came into contact with. Maybe that is not the best reason to throw your whole career into photography, but my fascination with how precious and small, and utterly adorable they are, definitely drove me to become a newborn photographer. After giving birth to my first baby, I found myself hating the idea of returning to work as a teacher, and looked for ways to be able to stay at home with him. My husband bought me my first professional camera and I began my career 16 years ago. As my ‘family and child portraiture’ business grew, I gravitated more and more to the tiny. Anne Geddes was definitely my catalyst. When I saw her newborn images taken in a way the world had never seen, I realized I wanted to do exactly that. I have focused on newborns for the past 8 years.
What part of your photography are you most critical about?
Almost all of it. I am a perfectionist which just about kills me haha! I am constantly striving to be better. I am my own worst critic, but as someone said, it keeps us improving. If I had to choose, I think perfecting the poses, as well as my editing style, are the two areas I am most critical about.
Who is your biggest supporter?
Definitely my husband. He adores me (blush), and praises each and every image I show him. No task is too big for him to help me with. I am truly blessed.
Biggest pet peeve in the photography industry?
I have found that so many photographers feel threatened by other photographers. I love helping new photographers along the way, chatting to the ones I strive to be like, and generally just helping each other get ahead. Unfortunately very few photographers have responded openly. I believe we are on the same journey and should support one another.
Biggest struggle as a studio owner?
I think my marketing and the business side of my photography have been my biggest challenge. Being a creative soul, my strengths lie in the artistic side of my business. I do not have anyone working for/with me, so time often gets the better of me and I tend to neglect the areas that I am not great at.
Favorite gear – camera, lighting, favorite newborn prop?
I love my 50mm EF lens. I wouldn’t shoot without it. I use a Canon 5D-mIII, which is a full frame camera. This has been amazing and has changed the way I photograph. When I moved my studio down stairs, I did not have enough natural light to photograph so I found a great alternative. I bought a Jinbei 50cm Diffuser Ball which mimics daylight.
I think I might be a little bias, but most of my furs, wraps and headbands are from Custom Photo Props. Other than their quality being amazing, they are the nicest people ever.
*We love you too Lisa!*
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I hope that in 5 years time I have been courageous enough to extend my style to a whole new level. I dream of publishing a book one day and hope that in the next 5 years I have grown enough to take the leap.
What does Photoshop mean to your work?
Everything. I am a little embarrassed to say that haha! Photoshop just makes every image better. Whether it’s the lighting, an action that you run, or a simple crop, I feel like it makes a photograph into art.
What has helped you succeed in the ever-changing newborn industry?
Learning to love my work and seeing it as an extension of myself has helped me find peace in this competitive market. Also taking myself less seriously haha. When I compare myself to other photographers, I feel disempowered and hopeless. Finding the balance between keeping up with new trends and following my own style is the key.
Your ordering process – do you have your clients come into your studio for a presentation or do you do everything online?
Currently online. I like the idea of in person sales, so ultimately that is something I will look into. But right now, with four boys, online works perfectly.