Stacey is a NZIPP Accredited Professional Photographer based in the Wellington region of New Zealand’s North Island.
Hi Stacey can you please tell us about yourself?
I was born and raised in South Africa and have been living in New Zealand for the past ten years. I have two beautiful teenage children and have been married for 15 years. We added a new baby to the family when we moved to New Zealand, you will see her featured a lot in my social media…her name is Opal and she is the sweetest Cavalier King Charles Spaniel you will ever meet. I am based in Wainuiomata, Lower Hutt and just love the Wellington region.
Why did you choose to pursue a career in photography?
I always loved taking photos. I am a strong believer in capturing moments in life that would otherwise be lost in time. When I had my daughter I realized very quickly how important it was to capture her every milestone. It was not until we moved to New Zealand that I was able to focus on my passion for photography full time. Capturing the true essence of who we truly are makes me happy, and nothing inspires me more than seeing the joy on families faces when they see their beautiful portraits for the first time, it’s a special moment!
What makes shooting children and babies so special?
Our babies grow up so quickly, and documenting their milestones is so incredibly important! I have always loved babies and children, there is something magical about them. It was a no-brainer that this would be the field that I would specialize in.
Working with newborns takes a lot of patience and there is a lot more to consider when working with these new babies. Safety is a big priority for me in the studio, and ensuring that they are in a safe and warm environment is key. This is also a time where most new parents leave the house with their new baby for the very first time, and what a privilege it is to know that they are entrusting me with their precious new baby! The best part is having my newborns back as they reach their milestones, being able to document those gorgeous baby rolls, those little giggles, those first steps and seeing their personalities come through.
What has been your biggest challenge so far?
My biggest challenge so far would have to be my self confidence. We are sometimes so quick to compare ourselves to others but we forget that we are all on completely different journeys of life. It has taken me ten years to finally realize that there will be many trends in this industry, but keeping true to my own style and doing what I love most is what is most important for my own business. I also worked out of my home for most of the ten years which I found incredibly challenging, and have only recently purposely built my studio. This has been a life changer for me and the studio is my dream come true. I have created a warm and cosy space for my clients to relax in whilst I work my magic. The studio is my new happy place, and you will often find me in there pottering around, tidying up and admiring all the beautiful props that I have collected over the years.
What compliment has touched you the most or what do you think is your biggest accomplishment?
I would say that my biggest accomplishment is the build of my studio. It was a dream of mine for as long as I can remember, and with a lot of tears along the way my dream was finally realized at the end of last year. Everyone that comes into the studio always compliments me on the space and that really means the world to me. I want every family to enjoy the space, I want them to feel relaxed and at home and to love it as much as I do.
What 3 words describe your photography style?
My photography style would be described as natural, timeless and moody.
What makes the good picture stand out from the average?
Anyone can pick up a camera and take a photo, the ability to take a good photograph is when you can convey emotion, and when you can tell a story through the image that you’ve captured.
How do you practice and improve your client base?
Most of my client base comes from word of mouth. Every client means so much to me and I treat them like I would my closest friends. They trust me and the service I provide and happily refer me to others.
Do you have a funny story from a shoot you would like to share?
I am known to be the “baby whisperer”, and often have parents joking around and saying that they will have me added to their speed dial.
Why did you join NZIPP, and start on the path of becoming Accredited?
Being a self taught photographer I wanted to ensure that I pushed my boundaries and wanted to continue to grow as a photographer. NZIPP is the perfect place for this. I finally took the leap and became an Accredited member in 2018.
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