Salt River Fineart Maternity Shootout

I wanted to take some time to talk about the photography shootouts that I participate in and how they help me to become a better photographer.  You probably notice these girls from some of my earlier blog posts featuring their styled maternity shoots.  You may be surprised to know that I photographed each of these ladies during a styled shootout hosted by another photographer, Ashley Nystrom, up at Salt River.

Since I decided to pursue photography as a business rather than just my documentary-loving hobby, 

I have done everything that I possibly can to learn as much as I possibly can about photography

photography business, and everything else relevant to success as a small business person and artist. 

One of the most valuable things I have done is to participate in these Styled Shootouts.  If you hear me talk about them in person, I might say, "I photograph fake weddings" and then I explain about models getting dressed up in wedding clothes, a stylist, florals, even cake sometimes, and a bunch of photographers get together to photograph the same thing.  I've done several "wedding" shoots and some other genres like maternity and budoir.

The experience is invaluable, and I would most definitely recommend participating in these styled shoots if you are a new photographer.  Why?  

You learn from other photographers--I always spend my time observing as well as taking photos.  I pay attention to what lenses my fellow photogs are using...where are they standing? What are they saying to get the models to pose the way they want?  etc. etc. etc.

Aside from observation, I have made friends at these shoots with other industry professionals.  Photographers that I would later call, text & email to ask for advice.  To call on to assist me at my own shoots, and to second shoot for.  These relationships are Invaluable.  I most definitely would not be where I am today without having participated in shoots like this.

I also learn more about how to run a more successful photography company...

all of the participants talk before and after the shootout in a private facebook forum where we can ask questions about marketing, business, and how to provide a similar experience for our customers.

For me, one of the biggest benefits I got from these shoots was confidence.  All of us photographers are working with the same thing.  Many of us got similar results, but with our own styles.  I love looking at the full galleries after the shoots.  I smile because I feel like I belong.  Like I too, am a professional just like these women, and that I too, can produce great images.  It makes me proud. 

Credits for this shoot:

Location: Phon D Sutton Recreation Area
Organized & Styled by: Ashley  Rae Photography
Makeup Artist: Pearl Espinoza
Floral Designs: Bloom & Blueprint
Hair: Sarah

Budoir Bathtub:
Model: Daylea Wahl

Victorian Chair:
Model: Sarah Marshall
Chair: AZ Retro Rentals
Gown: J Bridal Boutique

Floral Swing:
Model: Hayley Stall
Dress: Two Birds Bridesmaid

Model: Shay Helwig
Dress: Jens Pirate Booty

Contact me: Call or text: 5204440997 IG: amandabynumphoto facebook:

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