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Meet Vinings and Smyrna Photographer: Chanel French

Today we’d like to introduce you to Chanel French.

Chanel, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I’ve always had a camera in my hand since the time I was little. My first camera was a blue Fisher-Price film camera for kids. I was always the one snapping photos of my friends and I still have a ton of old photos from disposable cameras of the past at my parents’ house. I can still remember my first digital camera. It was, ironically, blue also and the quality of the photos it produced would probably be laughable today. Once I got a full-time job as an adult, I bought my first DSLR and started to get serious about learning photography and bettering my craft. I started my business about a month ago and I’m just focusing on turning my passion into my purpose, day by day.

Has it been a smooth road?
With a market that’s become so saturated lately, it’s hard to feel like you stand out at times. It’s difficult to get your name out there and have people realize you’re serious about photography when it seems like it’s something everyone is doing right now. It’s also hard not to compare yourself to other photographers sometimes. You wonder how they’re finding so much success when you’re struggling to even get noticed, But you really have to shut down the negativity, even when it’s coming from yourself, and focus on improving your skillset.

Any predictions for the industry over the next few years?
I foresee a big change in trend in the way photographers are looking to capture their subjects. It’s already starting to happen – photographers aren’t just concerned with getting the perfect pose with the perfect smile and the perfect styling anymore. It’s more about capturing your subject’s story and communicating that to the viewer. Freezing a moment so your client can remember exactly how they felt in that moment. I see photography moving towards focusing even more on successful storytelling.

What would you say has been the biggest challenge for you over the course of your career?
My biggest challenge over the years has definitely been having confidence in my own work and not comparing it to others’. Feeling like you’ve found your voice and style can sometimes be hard, especially when you fall in love with someone else’s work and it looks nothing like yours. Then you start to wonder why your work can’t look like theirs. But it’s all about embracing the beauty behind what YOU bring to the table.

Let’s change gears – is there any advice you’d like to give?
Learn. Learn learn learn. It’s okay to be a photographer that just enjoys taking and sharing pictures. But if you’re going to charge people, make sure you’re bringing adequate education to the table.

Contact Info:

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