Photography class in high school. Black and white film. Staying late in dark rooms to finish. At the time Vanessa Williamson had no idea she’d later turn photography into a career. It wasn’t until her husband noticed how great her photos were and urged her to start a business did she pursue it more. Well, not so much a business. As she likes to say, “It’s more a hobby/passion I actually make money from.”
Today that hobby/passion has Vanessa Williamson shooting everything from a baby’s firsts to sporting events to weddings. Now let’s sit back and get into this photogenic chat.
Kendra: You’ve mentioned that photography is a form of therapy for you. I couldn’t relate more as I took to writing to focus my attention on a positive when I was younger and throughout my adulthood. What does photography do for you in terms of therapeutic healing?
Vanessa Williamson: It allows me to have me time with my thoughts and creativity. When an individual can sit and be comfortable in their own thoughts without stress, that is considered meditation
Kendra: You’re a photographer who does a lotta bit of everything. From family shoots to newborn ones to sports photography. Which one do you feel allows a photographer the most freedom?
Vanessa Williamson: Sports photography because you get so much content. Also when you’re doing family or any other shoots people have a vision in their mind and you cannot go too far away from their vision.
Kendra: When it comes to sports photography. You’ve started to keep that separate from the rest of your work. Why did you decide to do that?
Vanessa Williamson: I am constantly studying photography. So I was watching a video and the person said they were doing that as well. They had everything on one profile, and what that does is confuse your potential customer base. They don’t know if you’re the photographer they are looking for if you’re doing everything.
Kendra: I had a good laugh when you mentioned all the foul language you encounter when shooting a game. Did you think when you were just a spectator that things got that verbally crazy during games?
Vanessa Williamson: I had no idea! When I saw athletes I always viewed them as these professional guys that played clean and took a loss very clean. So when I heard all that “passion” it was a shock to my system. However, I got used to it very quickly and then readjusted my mind to say “they are human.”
Kendra: Switching back to photography as a whole. Does it ever bother you when someone picks up an iPhone and thinks they’re suddenly the world’s best photographer because of the technological advances Apple has made?
Vanessa Williamson: Absolutely not! I’m actually impressed with some of the content iPhone photographers push out. I will use my iPhone at games to push out content immediately. I feel there is enough creativity to go around and if your upset about the iPhone photographer then step your game up to make people want your content.
Kendra: Can you tell us more about the Cancer Covered project you have going on? How it got started and where you are with it?
Vanessa Williamson: Wow how it got started, I really don’t remember in detail. I’m sure it was emotional because most times when I make decisions off of emotion it rarely comes out well. Where am I now, at this point my husband does a pink and black party every year in Maryland. He is doing it here in the Hudson Valley this year in October so we will collaborate on the project together.
Kendra: As we say goodbye, let us know what you have going on that people can be on the lookout for.
Vanessa Williamson: Photography is a passion for me. I do it because it makes me feel good to make people feel good. I just continue to work on my craft stay humble and learn from others success and their mistakes. People can follow my journey on Instagram, and oh, I don’t do weddings!