All images by text by Jamie Saechao. Used with permission.
I fell in love with photography while working at a job I absolutely hated! Sometimes you have to find what you don’t love to do in order to discover what your true calling is. I needed a creative outlet and photography allowed me to express myself, connect with others, and feel alive again. I especially loved connecting with other women, celebrating their beauty, and building confidence through portraiture.
I strive to create images that are elegant, timeless, and romantic. I feel most accomplished when I’ve created a portrait that makes someone stop and look a second time… although to be honest I think those images come to you, in the midst of creating. It’s something you have to wait patiently for.
I have also found great joy in documenting nature on film…there is a certain joy in capturing the beauty and simplicity of combining the two!
What photographers are your biggest influences?
I love the simplicity and beauty of Jose Villa and Elizabeth Messina’s work. They inspired me to start exploring film.
How long have you been shooting?
Why is photography and shooting so important to you?
Photography has been a way for me to not only connect with others but to reconnect with my own soul. Creating images is certainly an art form, but I have also found it to open a path to discovering myself… allowing me to step forward as an artist and express and create has been life changing.
Do you feel that you’re more of a creator or a documenter?
Since I shoot weddings, I definitely document. However I think I am more of a creator in general. The art of posing someone is brings out my creativity and joy for the art. I also love the process of editing and displaying images in a story telling way.
What’s typically going through your mind when you create images? Tell us about your processes both mentally and mechanically?
I am inspired by nature and my surroundings. I look for the feel of the “story”, whenever I am shooting. I have found that the story is usually revealed in small, sometimes overlooked elements, such as the way a woman brushes the hair out of her eyes, or the moment two people melt together for an embrace…when they don’t think the camera is on them. I feel like I have a strong intuition for what looks natural in a photo, and what doesn’t. I’m always striving to hone that in.
Mechanically, I have tried to become intuitive with my gear so that I can “shoot without thinking”. That allows me to focus on my subject and the light!
Want to walk us through your processing techniques?
Since I shoot a lot of film, I ship my film rolls to the Find lab after shooting. Once I get my basic scans back from the lab, I will edit slightly in lightroom. I usually just adjust brightness and contrast.
What made you want to get into your genre?
The love of beauty, romance, nature and story telling!
Tell us a bit about the gear that you use and how you feel it helps you achieve your creative vision.
Shooting film has strengthened my work. I am careful about each frame I create and I love the anticipation of waiting for the images after the shoot or event. Becoming a film photographer has given me a confidence in my capabilities that I don’t think I could have reached shooting digital. I use 120 mm film and the Pentax 645n, typically.
What motivates you to shoot?
The love and joy of creating. I also find great satisfaction in delivering an outstanding product to my clients and giving them a comfortable and memorable experience in front of the camera.