P is for … Photography

April 18, 2012

P is for … Photography. When the camera is in the hands of a creative person such as the person I am interviewing today as a Wednesday Worthy, photography is indeed, an art.

I have been privileged to know, online, the woman behind the fantastic website Stephanissima Creates for several years. She is a musician, writer, photographer, and a delightful person.

Me:  Thank you, Stephanissima, for joining us today. I’ve been looking forward to this interview very much.

Stephanissima: Aw, thanks! I’ve been looking forward to it too. I’ve never been interviewed before. This should be fun!

 

Me: Could you tell us something of the way your life’s journey has brought you to using photography as an expression of your creativity?

 Stephanissima: My foray into the photography world was quite by accident, really. I wasn’t interested in doing anything other than buying disposable cameras for vacation photos that would hopefully find their way into my scrapbook. My mom had been bitten by the photo bug and after her skill level surpassed what she could do with her Nikon Coolpix 4300, she got a new camera and gave me the Nikon. I experimented here and there and at some point, I got sucked in. (It has to be some undiagnosed addiction. Haha!) I’d get positive responses after posting photos, so I kept going. I think my music shots inspired me most of all. It was kind of a way of filling the void when I wasn’t in orchestra.

 

Me: Do you carry a camera with you everywhere?

Stephanissima: I try to. When I don’t have one, there’s usually something cool that I wish I could get a picture of. So it goes. Oh well, life isn’t all about capturing every single moment.

 

Me: I suspect your camera is much more sophisticated than my simple point-and-shoot digital. Do you have a variety of cameras, lenses, filters?

Stephanissima: I seem to have this knack of picking expensive hobbies: photography, climbing, orchestra, scrapbooking, etc. 🙂

I’m not at the point of getting cool lenses and filters yet. The Nikon was retired in 2010 (it had a good run–6 or 7 years!) after I wanted something with better zoom and more megapixels. Enter the Panasonic ZS5. Still a point and shoot, but I wasn’t looking for a big DSLR. I wanted something portable. The camera has done a great job. I got a second point and shoot back in December, the Panasonic LX5. It’s provided some new fun and challenges. I’m slowly working my way up. One day, I’d love to use a Canon 5D Mark II or something similar. That camera’s amazing.

 

Me: What sort of subjects attract you? Do you look for patterns, shapes, colors? How do you compose a shot? Are most of your photographs posed, or candid?

 Stephanissima: I’m most attracted to music/musical instruments, landscapes, animals, food, and small stuff. That doesn’t mean other things don’t catch my eye! I don’t usually look for patterns, though some of them can be very intriguing. I suppose I look mostly at colors and shapes.

I’d say at least half of my shots are candid. The ones that aren’t usually involve instruments. The people shots are usually candid because I haven’t done enough posed shots to feel comfortable with that yet.

 

Me:  I have been to your website, and have seen the creative things you do with your photographs. Do you do quite a bit of editing and adjusting after the photo is taken?

 Stephanissima: The only time I really want to do a lot of adjusting is when I’m playing with Photoshop or GIMP. Otherwise, I try to take good shots so I can avoid editing later. It doesn’t always work out like that. I’ll say I don’t do much editing.

 

Me:  I understand that you sell prints of your photographs through your website. I am very concerned about copyright online, and wonder if you could say a few words about how copyright issues impact your work?

Stephanissima: There’s a reason why my work has my name annoyingly in the middle of it. I wish people wouldn’t steal work. It makes everything more complicated. The following sentence needs to be drilled into everyone’s heads: Please ask if you want to use something from anyone. It’s good manners and a good habit to get into. Even if you get a no, go ask someone else. Someone will say yes.

 

Me: If someone is interested in your work, how may they contact you?

Stephanissima: They can head over to stephanissima.smugmug.com and click on the contact link. Also, I’m getting into web design. Just thought I’d throw that out there in case anyone wants to ask me for help. I’m still learning, but I might be able to steer you in the right direction.

Thanks for interviewing me today!

 

Thanks so much, Stephanissima, for doing this interview! I’ve learned things, and I’m sure my readers have. And now I’m going to go back to your website and look at your amazing photography again!

31 People reacted on this

  1. I especially like your animal/people photos, Stephanissima. That chipmunk is such a poser!! Thank you for sharing your passion with us.

    1. Stephanissima really has a talent for getting a good photo, doesn’t she? (I’m partial to her music still lifes, myself, but that likely doesn’t surprise you…)

  2. I love the flower photos!

    Nice interview. Interesting how people discover new talents or a passion for an activity from a simple incident or situation.

    Beth, thanks for your visits to my blog and for your insightful comments. They are very much appreciated.

    Doris

    1. Thanks, Doris. And thank you so much for your comment and for writing so beautifully about the difficulties of aging.

  3. I love photography but i suck at it 🙁

    Hope you’re enjoying the challenge so far!
    –Damyanti, Co-host A to Z Challenge April 2012

    Twitter: @AprilA2Z
    #atozchallenge

    1. Practice makes perfect! 🙂

      Yes, thanks, enjoying the challenge and happy to have met some wonderful bloggers along the way.

  4. Nice interview. I enjoyed your pix of the tullip with the snow cap. I’m in Colorado too. Odd weather some days. Thanks for sharing your photography journey. I often rely on my iPhone a bit too much for regular shots. It’s better than nothing and much easier to pack in the purse.

    1. Hurray, another Coloradan! The odd weather is part of the fun. At least I think so. 🙂
      I did end up getting a slightly bigger purse for both of my cameras to fit in it. That also means I can carry around a book, which is ok with me!

  5. i have been interested in photography for a while now—isn’t it true that you don’t need an expensive camera–i especially became interested when i saw a documentary on gordon parks—i would love to see your work–so i will visit later—great interview—new follower

  6. Stephanissima, your work is bodacious! I absolutely love it! I got a camera for Christmas and I have been trying to improve my skills at photography. It’s a Nikon coolpix too. Great post Beth and Stephanissima. That’s a beautiful name, btw. 🙂

  7. Oh, I love Stephanissima’s photography. I love the variety of subjects — the musical instruments, animals, wildlife and landscapes. I’ve always admired photgraphers who can really see through a lense. I studied photo journalism and worked in black and white, even developing my own prints. I always took my own photos as reporter. Loved the old cameras, but you can do so much more now with digital. Beautiful work and talent.

    1. “really see through a lense” — I like that way of putting it, Pat. And I can see that you really know what you’re talking about.

      Thanks so much! I’m so glad you enjoyed Stephanissima’s work.

    2. Thanks so much!
      I always have a hard time narrowing things down when people ask what I like to take pictures of most of all. There’s so much interesting stuff out there 😀

    1. Thanks, Pammy Pam. Guess it’s no surprise that someone named Pammy Pam would like the letter P!!

      Neither Stephanissima nor I can take credit for it — I got all my Letter pics from fotolia, a subscription source for photos.

  8. I’m so glad you did this interview with Stephanissima! It was a pleasure to read. Her website is looking great, and there are photos there I haven’t seen yet. They are so beautiful it is hard to pick a favorite.

    I suppose the watermark through the middle of the image makes more sense than a little one on a border than can just be cropped off.

    1. I was hoping you’d see this interview! I didn’t know quite how to alert the rest of the former-vox peeps. Her photography is soooooo good.

      The watermark through the middle does make a lot of sense. Are you thinking of it? I’m trying to imagine Sprockers allowing a watermark through his middle.

      1. I’m not sure about the watermark. One thing is I just don’t have the technical knowledge to do it (of course I could easily ask Stephanissima, who has been super helpful with such things in the past). Picasa (free) puts the watermark on the lower margin and resizes the photos for faster uploading all in one step. And then there’s the aesthetics of it, since my photos are for viewing online and I’m not really trying to sell them. Though it would be nice to earn some extra snack money for my kittehs.

  9. What an enjoyable interview! I admire Stephanissima’s photography as well. Beyond the photography and creativity there is a great sense of humour and encouragement and support. I don’t know how Stephanissima discovered my newbie photo blog at the time, but as one of my first followers, it was heartening to receive feedback – which adds a whole new level of joy to blogging, as you and other bloggers can attest.
     
    So thanks to you for sharing this interview, and for featuring Stephanissima Creates, Beth. For anyone who has not yet had the opportunity to check out this blog, you will be in for a treat!
     
    And your A-Z project sounds like lots of fun! I will have to snoop around some. Thanks for sharing!

  10. Stephanissima!!!!!
    ::waves::

    Sorry to be late arriving here.
    :O
    WONDERFUL interview! Congrats to you and to Beth!
    You know I love your work…it’s beautiful and fascinating. Your site looks super, too.
    Web Design! Hot diggety! You’ll be MOLTO FABULOSO!!!!!!!!

  11. I’m just catching up on these interviews, so forgive my tardiness! Great interview and gives me another chance to check out your photo site, Steph! Yay! 🙂
    Great job, both of you!

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