Tuesday, March 6, 2012

BEHIND THE LENS: Christy Ivey Photography, Dallas & Fort Worth, TX

We are excited to bring the vivid, candid and full-of-life work from Christy Ivey of Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas.  If it wasn't for running off to Italy for her wedding in Italy, and the gift of a camera from a friend, who knows where Christy might be today?  Check out this Canon-turned-Nikon gal from the lovely state of Texas.  Welcome!

Your Name:  Christy Ivey Segelhorst
Your studio/business name:  Christy Ivey Photography
Location:  Dallas | Fort Worth, TX

Your Style

In 50 words or less, how would your clients describe your photography?
The adjectives I hear most often are relaxed, spontaneous, true to life, timeless.  I love to capture people just as they are in life.  I'm obsessed with the perfectly imperfect.

Are you self-taught or classroom trained? 
I started out as self-taught but have attended several workshops and classes.  I'm a member of a variety of forums and read photography-related books and magazines often.  I've even read my camera manual {definitely not on the New York Times Best Sellers list but I highly recommend it}
How many years have you been a professional photographer?
One year officially.

Where do you want to take your photography business in 5 years?
I'm such an in-the-moment person that I've never been good at answering the 5-year/10-year question in interviews.  In five years I want to look back and be amazed at how much I've evolved, how much I've learned and improved, and be humbled by all the amazing people I've had the honor of photographing.  {And I'd like to be in a phenomenal studio with floor to ceiling windows, chandeliers, and a fabulous turquoise velvet chair….a girl can dream.}

Is there a photographer who inspires your style?  Who would that be?
It's funny that even though I've never shot film, I seem to always be drawn to the work of film photographers such as Jose Villa, Elizabeth Messina and Becky Earl to name a few.  I can't say they've inspired my style, as that is continually unfolding with every session I shoot; however, they do inspire me to not overshoot but instead have an eye and the patience for just the right moment to release the shutter.

Favorite location to take photos? 
I really don't have one favorite location.  It depends on the person(s) I'm photographing.  Their style and personality.

Favorite vacation spot?
The NC mountains in the fall.  I'm a true Carolina girl {I say "y'all and y'alls}, transported to TX in 2004, and I have to go back to get my fix as often as possible.   

Your Business

What was the pivotal moment when you decided to become a photographer? 
When we ran off to Italy to get married and honeymoon.  Someone bought us a nice point-and-shoot for the trip and I found that I truly loved and enjoyed photography.  I took a ton of pictures and now have some amazing memories captured.

What’s the best marketing tip that has worked for you?
Word of mouth and Facebook

What’s the most surprising thing a customer has asked you? 
I had a client ask if I could edit the engagement images I took for her to look like another area photographer's work.  She liked the vintage look of the other photographer's images.  I said no of course.   She ended up loving the photos I submitted to her.   

Favorite print lab? 
WHCC & Miller's.  For clients that purchase digital files, I recommend Mpix.

Your Gear

Are you Canon or Nikon?
Nikon!  My first DSLR was a Canon but when I upgraded I crossed over to the other side.

If you could only have one lens on a photo shoot, what would it be? 
The 50mm.

What brand bag do you carry your camera in? 
I'm a bag lady! I have three children age three and under {not triplets and no twins} so I like triple duty bags - camera bag, diaper bag and air-travel bag all in one.  My first bag was a jill-e and then I added a Kelly Moore {great for carrying my macbook}, and a Jeanne Oliver design.  Now on my wishlist is a Shootsac.
What gear would we find in your camera bag? 
My gripped Nikon D700, a 50mm 1.4, wipes, bottled water, and chapstick.  I rent various lenses depending on the shoot but the 50 is definitely my bff. 

Are you a natural light fan or strobe fan? 
Natural light.

Are you PC or Mac? 

Your Tips and Tricks

What post processing tools do you use? 
Lightroom 3 and PS CS5.  I also have to give a shout out to Kubota, TRA, and Florabella.  I keep my post processing light but these are my three go-to editing tools within Lightroom and PS.

Do you shoot in Raw or Jpeg? 
Raw.  I love the flexibility.

Best advice you would give your 20-year old self? 
There is no Plan B, only Plan A.  Thinking there's a plan B can make you less focused.  Less determined.  Do what it takes to succeed at plan A.  We weren't created for a life of mediocrity; life begins outside of our comfort zone. 

Best advice you would give a new photographer?
Practice.  Bypass Auto.  And don't compare your work to other photographers.  Only compare YOUR image from today to YOUR image you take tomorrow.  Oh, and photography is 80% business, 20% shooting.  

What site do you use for your photography and why?
For now I use Yola.  It's so user-friendly and has a variety of design options.  My portfolios are loaded through Viewbook though because I had a certain design style in mind and was better able to achieve it with using Viewbook.  The two work beautifully together.  It's really not as complicated as it all sounds…..

What Else Should We Know?

What was your worst photography experience? 
I can't think of a terrible experience.  Last summer while in NC I had a session with a friend and her family.  I was seven months pregnant, huge from holding a lot of fluid, and it was 100 degrees {felt more like 300 degrees}.  I know they say women don't sweat, they glisten, but I was way beyond glistening.  

What would surprise people most about you, whether it is photography related or not?
In grade school, I constantly was getting in trouble for talking.  That would surprise the people that know me now because I'm definitely not a big talker.  I love being social but I'm not one to be overly talkative.  I tell my mom that it's her fault because she used to threaten my life if I didn't learn to stay quiet in class.  Also, I hate to touch ice.  Just the thought of it sticking to my fingers makes me cringe.

Tell us something else you’d like us to know: 
I didn't start having children until I was forty.  And then I had 3 in 3.5 years.  My oldest just turned three and my youngest is five months.  One more thing is that if I could choose a talent to have it would be singing {and not just the kind that only sounds good in the shower…}.

And just because we want to know you, fill in the blanks

Three things I can’t live without…. 
my three children! And coffee {because I have three children}.  And music.

I wish I had more….. 
of an opportunity to travel abroad. I would love for us to return to Europe with our children. 

The best thing about being a photographer is… 
capturing moments that only happen once, in a way that makes them last a lifetime.

The most important lesson I ever learned was….
trust your gut 

My favorite time of day is… 
at bedtime.  I enjoy reading stories with each child and then we talk about what we enjoyed most about the day and what we're thankful for that day.  Everyone is tucked in and the house is quiet by 8:30.  Then that's my time.  I'm a night owl.    

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