Talking Passions, Inspirations and Photography with Chettara T.
Chettara, of Chettara T. Photography, and I have been collaborating together now for about a year. In 2018 she had 12 shoots published with another one being published today! She has been published on Off Beat Bride, Wedding Day Magazine, Mr. and Mrs. Unique, Black Bride, Love Inc., and The H Hub. Chettara is an incredibly talented and kind woman. The way I see it, she has a vision and then brings together a dream team of vendors to help her bring her imagination to life. She has single handedly introduced me to so many small business owners and creatives from all over, she even brought some gorgeous lace boots in, all the way from England! So, out of my gratitude for this incredible human being and her kindness toward me and my small business I wanted to return the favor by sharing her beautiful soul with you.
What are some of your passions?
This question has a very long answer for me! Some of my passions are: my Nova Scotia, Ducking Retriever, named Naiki (I never knew I could love so hard until she looked at me with those puppy eyes), the ocean (protecting it, loving it, and being one with it), creative outlets, Halloween, tea (I have a pretty big collection), and reading.
What inspires you the most in your shoots?
I’m not really sure how to describe it but whenever I’m doing a shoot I feel this overwhelming sense of peace and oneness with myself and whatever and whoever I’m working with. I guess, just knowing I’m free to explore my creativity and connect with others inspires me to look at things differently on a shoot and to tell someone’s tale to the best of my abilities.
As a small business yourself, what are your dreams and goals?
My dream and goal is to take my photography world-wide. I would LOVE to connect with various creatives and tell the tales of others around the world! Also, as a photographer, I would love to do more outside of the traditional selling of prints and art shows; like having workshops for local youth who are interested in the arts (even outside of photography) and developing scholarships and grants for creative projects (it’s hard for creatives to get the funds they need).
What lead you to working with Emma Elizabeth Jewelry?
A random post! While looking at posts in a FB Group, I noticed a set of vendors listed for a styled shoot; as being someone who is still relatively new to the scene, I spent about an hour or so checking out every vendor and what was offered. Once I saw Emma’s work… I fell in LOVE. All of her pieces are so creative, unique, precise, and when you add on HANDMADE… omg! I knew at that moment I had to reach out to her! Luckily, she responded to an overeager and newb person who messaged her on Instagram.
Describe your experience working with Emma.
It’s been a blast! At this point I’ve lost count of how many things we’ve worked and plan to work together on in the future! You give her some deets and she’s ready to go and even offers suggestions where needed when it comes to attire. I couldn’t ask for a better person to work with.
What are ways you’ve found that help your business thrive?
I’m in photography so it’s always hard since cell phones have upped their game with portrait mode. However, I found what works for me is just being personable and being myself with everyone I work with. I know this because I would get inquires that would mention they heard about how easy I am to work with from their friend or family member and love my portfolio. Photography is a heavy word of mouth business so it’s always best to be consistent.
What are your all-time favorite shoots? Why?
OMG you’re killing me! At the moment it’s a tie between couples and styled shoots. I love working with couples because I have the opportunity to tell their tale and capture moments they wouldn’t normally think of or notice since they are in the moment. I don’t do poses, so everything is natural and truly about them. Styled shoots are amazing because I can stretch my creative wings and play with bringing dream visions to life. It’s like I see these full pictures in my head and I get to work with other creatives to make them real…and that is awesome.
If you had to choose an inspiring and influential individual in your life, who would it be and why?
Without a doubt, my mom. Being a single mother of three is hard and even so, she refused to let anything hold her back. She raised all of us, worked 2 jobs, and still managed to make time for each of us (as a whole and individually). She also is currently the FIRST African American and FIRST female President of her Local Union and President of a community group she’s in. My mom is totally badass and if I end up a fraction of that I would be beyond ecstatic. She’s making a mark and I’m proud and inspired to do the same.
What’s your personal favorite photography style?
Although, I shoot what’s categorized as vibrant and moody, I’m a huge fan of dark and moody photography. When done correctly, it adds a vibe that resonates with you.
What got you into photography?
My grandma! She got me a camera when I was younger as a way to occupy my time (I was the only child for 8 yrs and grandchild for 7yrs). It was cheaper to pay for film than replace whatever I messed up by drawing on it! Lol. Anyway, she would tell me about art shows and we would watch documentaries about various photographers. After playing around with all of it, she entered one of my pieces to a local show. Little me was so excited to be selected as a finalist and I practically died when I won! As I got older I was able to explore it more and learn various techniques; it’s all a very beautiful process that changes all the time. Now that she’s no longer with us it feels like every time I pick up a camera she’s with me cheering me on (or telling me I’m crazy for laying on the floor). Photography, just like her, will always be a part of me.
What are your favorite things to capture on camera?
Couples and my dog. :)
(Questions for Chettara were curated by Ashley Stuive)
Please show Chettara some love and make sure to follow along with her via Instagram @chettaratphotography and Facebook. Also, stay tuned for Chettara’s big website reveal February 2o, but for now feel free to check out her landing page at www.chettaratphotography.com.
I hope you enjoyed getting to know Chettara through this interview as much as I did. And now, just for you, here is a sneak peek of some of the collaborations I was blessed to be a part of. Be sure to check out her latest Alternative Bride Styled Shoot published on Off Beat Bride!
Thank you Chettara <3