I am thoroughly impressed by the seriously skilled Nicole of Nicole Ladonne Photography. I had the opportunity to work closely with her this past weekend for Melinda & Jason’s wedding and I am really glad I did. She is like a breath of fresh air, very professional and so sweet! Nicole has a great eye for photography and I was excited to see the beautiful teasers she posted on her blog. Head over and check them out if you get a minute. You will not be disappointed!
What made you decide to go into wedding & lifestyle photography?
I actually kind of stumbled into it… I’ve studied art my whole life- painting, theatre, filmmaking, and in college- I took a couple of photography classes. I found I really loved the immediacy of it- I could capture my vision in a second! I started doing family portraits for my mom’s friends, and since my boyfriend is a web designer, he decided to make me a website. Looking around at other photographers, I starting seeing a new trend in wedding photography- I saw images that looked like they were straight out of magazines and movies! I thought it might be fun to try my hand at it, so I did one wedding for free- put the images on my new website, and almost immediately I was booking more!
What is your favorite part of working a wedding?
The first dance. Absolutely. I’m a huge music person, and I’m always so excited to find out what song my couples chose! Plus, it’s often the first time the couple have a moment alone on their wedding day- when they have the chance to focus on just being together.
What do you think it takes to be successful in your business?
It’s important to have an absolute love for what you do, and for the people you work for. I wont lie, this business is tough. It’s physically and emotionally exhausting (especially since you’re talking to me in July!). I absolutely believe that wedding photography can and should be art, but it is also a service, and as in any service industry job you must be able to give your time and your patience to your clients. It’s also very important to know your market, and to know your worth. It’s easy to undervalue what you do, but while a lot of the time my clients become my friends, it’s also important to stay professional. So, I guess you really need gobs of patience, and a secure understanding of yourself and your goals.
Where do you find inspiration?
Lots of things give me inspiration! Music’s a big one for me- it’s kind of silly, but I tend to have a specific song stuck in my head on repeat as I shoot a wedding. It’s the “song of the day” that I feel really sets the tone! I’m an emotional shooter, and I find that if I have a love song in my head, my photos turn out more romantic :)
Also- I’m definitely inspired by other photographers, movies, and my clients themselves!
Outside of work, what are your hobbies? What do you LOVE to do?
I LOVE to read. Always have- I have a passion for good stories. Also, yoga. Yoga keeps me balanced and sane- and keeps my body from collapsing during long wedding days!
Name one thing that you use daily and couldn’t live without.
The internet. I’m a serious internet junkie. I’m lost without it… it’s sad.
Any advice for couples?
Don’t sweat the small stuff! Plan your wedding around what’s going to be the most fun for you and your guests, and then enjoy your day!
Thanks for being a part of our blog, Nicole! I am so glad that I have had the chance to get to know you and your company!
- Our beautiful client, Melinda. I LOVE this shot!