One of my favorite things about being a photographer, is meeting other people who share my passion, but in very different ways. Jane and I met online a few years ago, and I finally met her in person in April. She is an amazingly beautiful, strong, and talented woman, and having watcher her battle cancer from afar, putting my arms around her in a real hello was incredible.
I wanted to share a little of Jane with you. Her work is very different from my own, but just as beautiful.
Here is my interview with Jane Bingham, and you can visit her website at www.JaneBingham.com.
1. Tell me about your photography style.
I think I have a couple of styles. When shooting for my personal gratification and expression, I think my style can be emotional and meaningful. I love to express what I am feeling or thinking through an image. To see it in my mind and make it appear through my lens. I think “artsy farsty” may fit me.
When shooting Victorian portraits, my style would be more traditional to go with the Victorian feel.
2. What are your favorite things to shoot, and why?
On a professional level, my favorite things to shoot are my Victorian portraits. Particularly girls all decked out in lace dresses, floppy hats and flowers.
On a personal level my favorite thing is to shoot to express myself and finding beautiful light.
3. You have a fairly concentrated niche with your Victorian images. How did this come about for you? What made you realize that this is what you loved?
I grew up in an old Victorian home in Pitman, NJ. I love the richness of the old wood, fancy thick moldings, my favorite books to read when I was a young teen were set in Victorian times. The images are soft and romantic. I love the dresses and formality. Maybe I love all those things because it is opposite of what I am. So many of us mothers and fathers love seeing our girls all dressed up with frills but how often do we get to see that and enjoy it? It is nice to have that opportunity to hire me to dress them up and capture a moment in time where they are purely little girl.
4. What suggestions do you have for newer photographers, looking for their own style?
Look at what you love. Shoot what you love. Create what you love. Have passion about it. If you don’t have a passion about what you are shooting then your images will be mediocre at best.
5. What is your favorite piece of equipment?
My 50-200mm zuiko lens
6. Canon or Nikon? (or other, I guess there are “others”)
Of course there are others. I shoot Olympus!
7. What is your favorite image that you’ve taken? Why is it your favorite?
Wow, that is a hard question. One of my favorite images that I have taken I titled “A Fork in the Road”. This was an image I saw in my mind while driving down the road. I had been diagnosed with an incurable form of blood cancer about 18 months before. I was being faced with having to make a decision of where and how I wanted to continue treatment for the cancer. I was struggling with the different choices I had, not knowing what the best form of treatment would be. All the while, knowing that none of the current treatments would lead to a cure. I saw the fork in the road that I was facing and needed to express it in the form of an image.It find that therapeutic and comforting.
8. What suggestions do you have for people looking to hire a professional photographer?
Do not look at pricing first. Look at their portfolio. Do you absolutely love what you see? Find someone that you fall in love with their images! If you don’t love what you see and I mean ABSOLUTELY love, then keep looking. Only after you find what you love should you look at the pricing. If you find you do not think you can afford this photographer that you love their work…ask about a payment plan. Many photographers offer payment plans now even if they do not advertise it. It doesn’t hurt to ask and you will be so much happier in 10, 20, 30 years when you look at the awesome portraits…remembering how sweet and precious your little baby was when they were a fresh, wrinkly newborn…or when your little girl was sweet and innocent…or when your son was changing from a young boy to a teenager trying to find and express himself, or when your young man graduated high school or college, when your daughter became a bride and began her new life as a wife. These are memories and times in their and your lives that you want captured in the best light so you can enjoy them for the rest of your lives and the lives of generations to come.
This is one of my favorite images of Jane’s. It’s a painted portrait, something she photographed and then painstakingly turned into a “painted” piece in Photoshop. This is one of my favorite fairy tales, too!
Janie, thank you for letting me interview you! I can’t wait to see you again next spring!
Jane Bingham is a professional photographer out of Sewell, NJ. Her website can be viewed at http://www.janebingham.com.