kate gansneder is a secret agent in disguise as a photographer. she is a business coach (how awesome is that?) – all the while perfecting her mad skills behind the camera. allow me to introduce to you the lovely kate gansneder.
tell me about yourself and what prompted you to get into photography.
Ha ha! This is like the “I’m x years old, mom, married”…. I will pass up the boring stuff (even though yes I am all of those things). I actually never expected to “get into” photography. I like taking pictures when I was a kid, we actually had a darkroom in my house – but it wasn’t a lifelong pursuit for me. I picked up a Pentax K1000 when I was a teen, and thought it would be fun to mess around with. I started with the school photos division of an Olan Mills, and kept wandering in and out of the industry as I pursued my career in retail management. I left retail eventually and started working for a high volume boutique studio, and then a very low volume, high end studio after that. Then I decided to go out on my own and make a go – my husband was very supportive, helped me buy gear and really pursue it. He fell in love with it in January of last year, and we’ve been working on improving our work every day since. I primarily shoot natural light, but recently renovated our garage into a studio.
what can clients expect from you when they book a session?
From the get go, its a very personalized experience. I do as much in person (or over Skype) as I can. We talk through ideas, clothing, what they want to do with their images, etc. Then, once we’re at the session, I make conversation. I take the time to really get to know them, make them comfortable, and to make photos fun. After the session, they can expect a few sneak peeks and then after they order, a high quality product – and a special gift.
how do you create that one-of-a-kind experience for your clients?
A few things really. I like to make a pinboard that we can both pin to to create a vision for their session; I also keep track of anything fun or special that came out during our session – favorites, inside jokes, etc. I make sure to handwrite a thank you note and mention something that made their session memorable to me, and I also include a gift – usually something that I know they’ll love based on what I learned from them at the session (or in the pre-consult)
who is your greatest photographic inspiration and why?
That’s a hard one. I have so many incredible artists I follow. People that inspire me are Tim VanBergen, Gustavo Alfaro, Michael Greenberg, Lindsay Adler, Tamara Lackey, Spanki Mills, My 4 Hens, and 3 Girls Photography. All for different reasons. Some are due to their command of light, some are for their marketing and business sense, some are just because they are so real. But every single one of them is because they convey emotion and storytelling through their imagery.
Is photography just the equipment and programs or is there something that makes it more?
if photography was just equipment and programs, everyone could do it. Oh, wait! I’m kidding, but really — its a mix of four things to me. It’s in part the quality of the equipment you’re willing to invest in to better your craft (and I’m not saying you have to have the latest and greatest camera), the skill with the programs you need to create the vision you have for your art, then the constant pursuit of education to better your craft both technically and compositionally, and then finally vision. Photography to me is about writing the story of the world through your own minds eye using things more powerful than words, and moving the world with your message.
what is your most memorable session/photographic experience – and why?
Ha ha! Photographing a client in a moving ferris wheel! I am so mortifyingly afraid of heights, its crazy (I literally cried like a baby this last summer riding one with my husband). I kept my eye behind the camera so I wouldn’t think about it much, but I still had to move alot within the bucket to get shots. Gah! Still makes my stomach in knots to think about. My client was afraid of heights too, but I had a vision for the session, darn it! LOL
if you could photograph one person, present or past – who would it be? Why?
Audrey Hepburn. She had such an understated presence and grace, and her fluidity just amazes me. Without question.
who is your target market?
My target market are upper middle class families, with children. They like to take vacations even if its just a day trip, and they love things like good coffee, adventures, shopping and the outdoors. They’re well rounded Seattlities.
to find out more on kate and what she has to offer, please visit her through the following links: