A Fall Portrait Session With Cailee

The idea for this shoot was very unconventional to my usual creative process. A while back, I received a message from Alicia of Humble Honey Photography, wanting to know if she could second shoot with me or if I needed an assistant. At the time I was just getting into the thick of wedding season, so we had to put working together on the back burner; but when fall came around we finally had some time to meet up and chat! As we got to know each other and shared our journeys with photography, everything she told me about was exactly what I remembered it was like for me when I was starting out. At that time in my career when I was just getting going, it would have been SO beneficial to have someone to help me out and answer any questions that I had, and I think I would have made less mistakes or maybe done done some things differently. I knew that I could offer Alicia a different perspective, now being in the wedding industry for a few years, as well as having learned some of the ins and outs of being self employed. I thought; if anyone could learn from my mistakes so that they could avoid those little hiccups, it would feel so fulfilling to share the knowledge I’ve gained with others!

To clarify, I by no means think I know everything there is to know about photography. Like, not even close! But I think one of the greatest gifts you can give is knowledge and shared experiences, and I was so honored that Alicia came to me and wanted to learn from me. I happily put this shoot together with my friend Cailee so we could work together and I could share how I usually do things! Planning shoots has always been so much fun for me (honestly, planning anything is fun for me; I can’t get enough of it!), so I got fairly hands on with this one by taking Cailee to pick out wardrobe and doing her hair and makeup. We met up on a sunny fall afternoon, and got to go through everything from different posing techniques, directing, lighting, exposure, camera settings, and just generally being confident in your skill. Additionally, it was a blast to bounce ideas off each other and I learned from her just as much as I hope she learned from me! It’s so easy to get into a comfortable pattern with photography, so I think working with someone who’s style is different than yours opens you up to other ideas or perspectives, and it makes you an overall better photographer too.

We shot all kinds of different things until it was almost completely dark out and couldn’t shoot anymore. It felt so refreshing to shoot stuff just for myself and flex my creative muscles a little bit! I’m a firm believer that regardless of how busy you can get with client work, it’s still so important to do personal projects as well, to fulfill your own creativity too. I’ve been very lucky to work with clients that trust me enough to be creative and try new and different things on shoots and wedding days, but there’s still something different about planning a shoot from start to finish, based entirely off of your own ideas, that’s satisfying in a different way!

I’m still so baffled that some of you guys approach me, wanting to learn from me. Especially when I feel like I still have a ton to learn on my own! But I’m more than happy to be an open book, so if you’re a new or aspiring photographer and have any questions about the business side of it, or want to do a mentor session together, please send me a message! Community makes us all better and I’ve absolutely loved teaching what I know and sharing how I do things.

And please, check out Alicia’s work! You can follow her on Facebook here, or on Instagram here. She captured some awesome images from this shoot too and you should for sure take a look!

Jessica MummComment