Nika Savins Photography.

Today I had the pleasure to interview the amazing Nika Savins.
How long have you been in the photography industry?
Not long. I've always loved photographs - taking them and looking back through them... but, growing up, I never owned a DSLR, I had no formal training and I knew no photographers. Photography was something I was always drawn toward, but with no background and no connections it felt a little inaccessible. I wasn't sure where to start or weather I could do it. Whenever Alex and I would talk about the future and what we both wanted, this always came up. So, a little over a year ago, we decided to pursue it. We spent all our money on a camera and I devoted all my time to learning how to use it. Our friends and family members were very supportive and gracious, traipsing out into the wild with me in the early morning hours and letting me photograph them non-stop. Before long friends of friends were wanting me to take photos for them, and slowly but surely I began to feel comfortable about people giving me money for it. I shot my first wedding last weekend (eee!) and so far I have four more booked for this year. So, I suppose you might say I've been in a photography industry for about a year. And in my first year, as I've met other photographers (both established and aspiring), everyone I've interacted with has been so friendly and generous and willing to help, freely offering their insight and experience. It's been really lovely and a lot of fun. Photography wasn't a door that felt open to me from the beginning, just waiting for me to walk through; it was one of those doors I had to get up and open myself. But from the moment we made the decision we knew it was right, and I feel like I'm doing something I'm made to do. Photography is something I pour myself into. It's a creative endeavour I lose myself in, and it's such a wonderful gift to be able to give people.

Who is your biggest inspiration and why?

There are a bunch of photographers whose work I love, but Tim Coulson and Louise Buma (of Sunny and Scout Photography) have been my biggest inspirations. I found Tim's website online and loved both his work and his attitude toward it. Alex and I hired Tim to shoot our wedding back in June of 2012, and could not have been happier with our decision. The images are beautiful, they illustrate the day perfectly, and our family will treasure them forever. More than that, we loved the way Tim treated our wedding day. I've been to weddings where the photographer is willing to, in some ways, disrespect or violate the ceremony for the sake of great photos. Tim was so respectful of what was taking place. He treated our ceremony like the sacred event it was, understanding that photographs serve life and not the other way around. Earlier this year I attended one of Tim's workshops in Perth and learned more from him. He's been a huge influence and an inspiration to me. Louise Buma and I grew up in the same country town and went to the same high school, though she was a few years older than me. When I began this journey we reconnected online, and her advice has been invaluable. She advised me about what equipment I should get, and she had me photograph her for her 'Hey Baby' series. Both Tim and Louise inspire me with their work, and their down-to-earth attitude and willingness to help makes me feel like my dream is a little more accessible. A little more possible. That said, it's the people around me who inspire me the most. It's the moments I want to capture. The way people look at each other, the connection they share. For me, photography is about celebrating and savouring life. Communicating something true and worthy. That's what makes me want to pick up my camera.

What camera do you use?

I use a Canon 5D Mk III. My first ever DSLR. When we decided to pursue this, we were serious about it, haha.



Do you prefer film or digital?

I haven't shot with film since I was ten years old with a Kodak disposable camera. It's something I'd love to learn about in the future, but for now I'm shooting digital.

What is your favourite lens?
Canon 35mm 1.4. To be honest, I only care about the technical side of photography inasmuch as it helps me take better photos. It doesn't excite me and it isn't where my gift is. I think a good photographer (of people) is one who knows and loves people, rather than equipment. One who is able to connect with people in order to capture them. Hence the brief answer haha. ;)

 What is your advice for teens who want to be a photographer?

Haha - I'm not sure I feel adequately qualified to offer too much advice just yet, but I would say... keep taking photos and learning as you go - trial and error is the best way to learn. Don't be too scared or too proud to ask questions. Discover your own style. Pay attention to whoever you're photographing - people are different and if you aren't in the business of simply churning out a product you need to really see them before you start trying to capture them. Treat every shoot like it's your first, last or only shoot - because it might be for the people you're shooting, and you want to give them images they'll treasure forever, the kind of images you'd like to receive yourself. Taking lots and lots of photos can mean the difference between a 'good enough' image and the perfect image. Wear comfortable clothes with pockets and always take a bottle of water, haha. And finally, only do it if you really love it, because it shows. 

Thank you again Nika for letting me interview you! Your photography is a m a z i n g and so are you!

You can see more of Nika photography here and if you like her work give Nika a follow on Instagram, @nikasavins.

The Happy Cabin - Leah

Today I have had the opportunity to interview the lovely Leah from The Happy Cabin!

Tell us about your shop?

The Happy Cabin is a Men and Women's clothing store with a mix of homely goodies and worldly treasures. A haven for sexy lumberjacks and dorky girls.

What is your favourite fashion trend  at the moment?

I've developed a slight obsession with stripes, and I'm really liking anything light and cotton considering it's so hot in Brisbane at the moment. I really like natural fibres, and a lot of the guys stuff I have in is made from organic cotton or bamboo - super cool.

What is your favourite thing about owning a online shop?

The online shop is really just a virtual version of my real life shop, so they're really one in the same. I guess my favourite thing would be designing everything and writing up little stories about the clothing.

What is your favourite brand?

In the shop I'd say House of Cards - such a talented young Brisbane lady, every collection she makes just gets better and better, she is destined for big things in the fashion world. Outside of the store - I'm a bit of a sucker for American Apparel. Gotta love a good basic. 

Who inspires you?

People who are positive. My Mum and Dad. Beyonce. Hell yeah.

Do you have a favourite print you love to wear?

I love whipping out a good tacky 90's Fran Fine leopard print. It's nostalgic, funny and makes me do adventurous things.

Lastly, who is your favourite fashion designer?

Lisa Gorman - I'm a bit of a Gorman Fan and I think what she has created is phenomenal, both in her clothing and business.

Thank you Leah for letting me interview you!

You can visit The Happy Cabin HERE and you can also follow Leah on Instagram, @thehappycabbin.


Are you a photographer who wants to share tips or advice, be interviewed by me, share your work or do  guest post? If you are interested please contact me,

Interview With Kristy.

I have had the pleasure to interview the lovely Kristy Van Eck. Kristy is an amazing photographer.

How long have you been in the photography industry?

I've been taking photos for as long as I can remember. But I've been taking photos and asking for money since the beginning of this year.

What camera do you use?

I've been blessed with an amazing sister who is willing to lend me either her Canon 5D Mark II or III. But as of last week, I have a Mark III of my very own!

Who is your biggest inspiration and why?

It's hard to pinpoint because there are so many incredible photographers  out there! But I really admire the work of Michelle DuPont, Tim Coulson and Louise Buma (from Sunny + Scout).
Michelle has a way of making me catch my breath with all of her photos (have a look for yourself and you'll see what I mean!). Tim is a pure legend who makes me want to use a film camera and travel the world! Louise, not only is my big sister, but I've worked with her and seen her in action - she has a way with clients, a way with natural light, and a way with even the simplest of things; making them all beyond beautiful.

What do you use to edit your photos?

I use Lightroom 4. I definitely believe you can over edit images, and the last thing I want is for people to look not like themselves and LOOK edited.  Lightroom is great to help inhabited what you've already captured and just bring it up a level (or two!).

Do you prefer film or digital?
Right now I'm a digital gal. It's fast and convenient, and the quality of DSLRs is constantly improving so I don't feel like I'm missing definition. I haven't used film since I was little, with those yellow Kodak disposable cameras. I would love to try it again, who knows - maybe I'll fall in love with it!

What is your favourite lens and why?

I've used a lot of lenses in my time, but there's one that I've had the longest and used the most and still never fails to deliver good quality images - the Canon 50mm 1.8 prime lens. Even though the focus system isn't great, and it looks pitiful next to its big brother the 50mm 1.2; for the bargain that it is it still manages to blow me away!

What is your advice for teens who want to be a photographer?

Keep an open mind. It takes a lot of talent and familiarity with the public to be able to live solely on a photographers income. I work two other jobs and honestly don't know if I'll ever not need to work elsewhere. Start small and find your niche; take pictures of friends, family, pets, animals, flowers, whatever you find intriguing! Don't be afraid to get flat on your back for the best shot, get square eyes from sitting for hours in front of the computer, and most of all don't be afraid to admit you don't know something and ask for help or advice. I'm still learning and I doubt I'll ever run out of questions.

What is your favourite time to shoot?

I'm a morning person. I love to get up before the sun and, weather permitting, go for a walk and just capture things as the sun rises - it's when creatures are scurrying, birds are singing, and you'll never get fog and light like that at any other time of the day!

Thank you so much for letting me interview you, Kristy. I love your work.

Check out Kristy's amazing work

Give Kristy a follow on Instagram  @kissyvaneck and a like on Facebook.

My Photography

                                                    Daisy // Nans Dog, Ellie // A Flower

Banana Bread.

Banana Bread.
: 1 & 3/4 cups SR flour
: 1/4 cup plain flour
: 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
: 2/3 cup brown sugar
: 1/2 cup milk
: 2 eggs
: 50 grams butter melted
: 2 over ripe bananas
: mash the bananas
: Sift all the dry ingredients together
: Add all the wet ingredients to the mashed banana then mix the two together
: Line & grease a loaf tin & bake in 180 degree oven for 45-50 mins

Photography Tips.

For the last year I've been shooting with my camera on manual and my photos are so much better. Read your camera manual, take a photography workshop, read some photography books and get your camera off auto.
 If you are shooting a portrait or a group of people, position them where you would like them. Make sure there is nothing distracting going on in the back ground. I would recommend a plain background like a wall, cream blanket, or grass so your subject is the focus.
Focus on your subject and it will stand out against a blurry background.  Practice shooting with different apertures.

You'll get a completely different perspective when you get down to your subjects level.  Make sure you move around and get different angles.

 Everything looks better in natural light. Here I have stood near window to get good natural lighting. The best time to shoot is around 2 hours before sun set or early in the morning.

Practice make perfect! This is probably one of the most important tip because not only will you get lots of practice you'll also get lots of interesting photos and develop your style.

I am not a professional photographer, just a girl who loves to take photos. I hope you find my tips helpful!


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Happy Weekend x
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