Using Light to Tell the Story
Artist Interview with Kate Kanters
Kate Kanters with Lensbaby Sweet 50
Q: When did you start taking photographs? Why did you continue?
A: I learned film photography in high school, but took a long break from it through young adulthood. When I became a mom, I wanted to take photos of my babies that were not just photos I loved because they were my kids, but because they were good photos. I've been a serious photographer for about 5 years now.
Q: Which is your favorite Lensbaby lens and why?
Kate Kanters with Lensbaby Edge 35
Q: What tips do you have for beginners just learning how to use Lensbaby Gear?
A: The Lensbaby website has a wealth of knowledge on how to use the gear, from how-to videos to tips from seasoned photographers who have inspiring work they've shared using Lensbaby gear. Facebook also has a few Lensbaby groups where members will answer any question you may have or will help you troubleshoot. And of course, the Lensbaby ambassadors are always excited to help in any way they can! You'll learn your gear best by practicing with it. Keep an open mind and learn to see in a new way!
Q: What professional photographers have influenced your work, and how do you incorporate their techniques into your photographs?
A: There are so many people on Instagram that I follow for inspiration, it's hard to narrow it down.
Q: What is the most difficult part of being a photographer?
A: Two things that I struggle with as a photographer is the comparison game and going through ruts where I am feeling uninspired or just don't feel like picking up my camera. The comparison game sometimes helps and sometimes hurts me. It will push me to try harder or go out of my comfort zone, but it will also make me questions myself. I think all photographers go through periods where they are having a hard time creating work they love. It can be especially challenging during the winter months where I live because its sooo cold, the skies are dull and gray, and my kids are gone at school until it gets dark out.
Q: Do you have formal training as a photographer or are you self-taught? What was that journey like?
A: I've taken some online classes and workshops, but also taught myself a lot by pouring over resources Ive found online or on YouTube.
Q: What details do you believe make the best photographs? How do you go about focusing on them in your work?
A: I love finding different kinds of light. I like to experiment with backlight, low light, and even harsh light to help in storytelling. I really spend a lot of time noticing how the light changes around my house and in areas I like shoot so that I can be sure to plan to shoot at specific times to achieve a certain look or photo that I have planned in my head.
Q: Tell us your favorite quote!
A: Be Kind.
Q: What is your favorite subject to photograph?
A: My kids, of course. They are my whole life and nothing is more special to me than documenting them as they grow and change. It's the only way I can preserve the past.
Q: How would you describe your photography style?
A: Multi-faceted...I love shooting my kids first and foremost, but I also love street and landscapes, as well as macro. I am also drawn to dark and moody photos over light and airy.
Q: What is the most rewarding part of being a photographer?
A: I love creating something that is special. I don't do a lot of client work, but when I do, their reactions when you share photos of their loved ones is so rewarding. For me personally, if my house was on fire, aside from the people and pets inside, my photos would be my most treasured keepsakes.