Paige Elizabeth – Denver/New York

15 09 2007

Paige Elizabeth couldn’t have hit the nail on the head any better than when she says on her website, “It is an honor, a pleasure, and a sacred responsibility to photograph a wedding” and although many of us can relate to that honest sentiment we sometimes need a little reminder of it too! Paige prides herself in capturing cherished memories & in the short time we’ve known Paige Elizabeth we’ve seen her already stunning work going from strength to strength and there has been a continuous stream of creative & astounding images.

Paige Elizabeth

Many thanks to Paige for her informative interview & a great set of images! View more of Paige’s wedding & portrait photography on her website & blog.

How do you keep yourself motivated & your photography fresh?

I really believe that every single wedding or portrait is unique and there is incredible joy in that. I’m always trying to get up somewhere or down somewhere or move something else or add more of something. I’m excited every time I have a camera in my hand and have been know to giggle uncontrollably when the session is grooving. It’s the best feeling in the world!

I sponge ideas everywhere and that keeps me really motivated. And not just photography. I snack ideas from magazines, movies, blogs, books.
I actually drive the people in my life a little nuts because I am constantly absorbed by light and locations. A road trip with me is nearly impossible as I chatter about what you could do in the places we drive past. I now keep a notebook in the car and jot down addresses and ideas for shoots.


What (or who) has inspired, & continues to inspire, your work?

I try to keep learning to inspire me. I dedicate budget to training at least four times a year. This training can be everything from financial to marketing to photography. It’s amazing how inspiring it is just to be in the company of other photographers! Photographers are so creative and the synergy of ideas is like chocolate. I also dedicate time to studying creative mediums other than photography. I studied ceramics late last year and it has been fascinating to see how that informed my posing ideas.

And my clients inspire me! I love what happens when you set people free to follow their wildest hairs. All most people need is the confident invitation and they have a dream of themselves that you can help them fulfill. That’s inspiring. Sometimes I drive the vision, but some of my favorites are collaborations.

On the photography front: LensWork keeps me looking for the art,
Vanity Fair and PDN keep me fashion forward, and active involvement with local and national photography communities keeps me in touch with new trends.

What do you say or do to put your clients at ease in front of the camera?

The absolutely incredible Cheryl Jacobs taught me that there is an implicit invitation in someone hiring you to make photographs for them. That one moment with her completely changed how I photograph. When
I meet with a client I give them permission to be whatever they want to be and I’m willing to go there with them. When you make a photograph I truly believe that you are creating memories, so the time and conversations you have are precious.

Photographers have to be therapists to some extent. I have to be willing to be wild, quiet, playful, pensive… to follow and lead on the path to the best photographs. I’m constantly shifting to respect their perspective and encourage them to go where my vision is leading. By choosing to make photos with a subject, rather than take or capture, it becomes a collaboration that’s not about what I’m doing but how well I’m listening.

Show us your favorite image that you’ve shot so far this year & tell us what it is about this image that makes it special to you.

Oh there are so many! But every time I’m trying to put together a set of photos I have a hard time coming up with them. The photo of Kenzie on the chair in the dirt field is a favorite. I waited almost eight months from concept to fruition with that shot and I loved the feeling when I knew we had nailed it. I love knowing when I’m going to give a client an incredible photo. But my personal favorite would have to be this photo of my husband.

Paige Elizabeth

He is forever subjected to the whims of my camera. The problem is that it’s usually in the service of testing new equipment or ideas. As we sat on the back patio one evening this summer enjoying the last day of what was for both of us a well-deserved mini break, I realized it was a moment I wanted to keep.

Too often I forget to make the same photographs for myself that I have so much fun making for my clients. To that end, my darling man found himself dragged from a pleasant Sunday evening glass of wine to an impromptu portrait session. He is typically perfectly pressed, immaculate in every way. I love this photo because it is the weekend version that is so special to me.

What was it that first drew you to take up photography?

I was always very involved with creative pursuits, even as a child. And I have been fortunate in my life to be surrounded by people who encouraged all of those wild whims. But photography made it all come together for me. The connection between what I could offer creatively and holding that moment in a person’s life still forever was like feeling sunshine for the first time. It’s been a joy ever since.

I was working with 35mm cameras and selling fine art prints when I lived in Japan. But it wasn’t until I started interacting with people in front of the camera that it all came together for me. The transition was two part. While working with Paul Newman’s The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp for kids with life threatening illnesses I was fortunate to be in the company of and photograph with what I still believe are some of the best children’s portraiture artists in the country working under tough conditions and making magic. They did in less than three days and sleepless nights with film, slides, a tape deck, and a projector what wedding photographers now do digitally with our slideshows. (Carolyn, wherever you are you still inspire me!) You’ll never see these photos. Part of what I love about camp is that it’s all about the kids and to protect them the photos from camp cannot be shown publicly. Believe me, they’re incredible.

The second part was the birth of a friend’s first child. I had no idea what to bring with me to the hospital as a gift, so on the day Jack was born I brought my camera. (We joke that his mother gave birth to my business too.) We had a wonderful time making photos of his first day in the world and when I returned the next day with prints, these were film days, they told me how much fun they had before even seeing the pictures, which they also loved. That’s when I knew there was something there. That through a camera something in me really had something to offer to others.

Tell us three things that are important to you in the day to day running of your business…

Family! And I’m so not good at keeping that balance. This year is about some sacrifices and they’ve been amazing in their support. (Thank you! I love you!) And 2008 is about balance.

Creativity and Service. I try to feed both my heart and my clients desires every day.

Numbers. Knowledge is power and it’s so important for photographers to learn to run a good business too.

If you were planning on having a photo-shoot, who would you want to photograph your portrait & why?

Kids. Hands down. They don’t edit what they’re looking for and end up doing incredibly creative things. Hmmm. I smell a future project…

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

Paige Elizabeth

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8 responses

15 09 2007
Chris Stewart

Absolutely beautiful work!!!

17 09 2007
Stacy Cross

Yeah, Paige Elizabeth is AWESOME! 🙂 Fabulous, amazing work from a talented and super sweet lady!

20 09 2007
Bruce Erik Steffine

A very enjoyable read! I love the phrase, “I snack ideas … “.

Paige creates lovely images. Excellent compositions!!

21 09 2007
sdohana

Thank you so much for sharing. I love the feel of your photos. They put me in the moment with your subject.

26 09 2007
Kelly Simmons

We had the honor and true pleasure of having Paige Elizabeth photograph our wedding. What she did was capture our love in multiple astounding images! At some point when people visit our home, we know they will look at out pictures and say—“Oh, that’s a Paige Elizabeth.” John and I are so grateful to have had you in our lives!

28 09 2007
Joy Moody

Paige is one of the most inspiring women I know. She wears her heart on her sleeve, and I adore her for that.

13 11 2007
Karen Doub

I am sooo proud of you! Your work shows your joy, heart, and soul. You have truely found your artistic spark! My love from the beginning, Mom

15 11 2007
Colorado Wedding Photographer » Mi Casa Su Casa….

[…] Here I am playing with RJ’s fish eye.  RJ’s in the back with me and Paige.  She’s my sister from another mother, and she’s also been featured on “Don’t Box Us In!” […]

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