It's Day 4 of Wedding Week, and we're getting to know a little about Dallas K, what inspires them and their advice for keep your photography fresh and inspired. Say "hi" to Dallas and Sabrina...
Tell us a little about yourself, where you live and how you got started in photography.
We are Dallas and Sabrina. We are a married couple currently living and working in Vancouver BC, though we are starting to focus on international work, and will be working and possibly moving to Europe next year. We love to travel and explore different cultures around the world, and we especially love it when our clients hire us to go travel with them! I (Dallas) got my start in Photography at the tender age of ten, when my mom FINALLY let me play around with her Pentax ME-Super that I had been dying to get my curious little hands on since I had first seen it. I was pretty obsessed with it then, and that didn't really slow down over the years. Eventually I bought my first digital SLR (a nikon D60 and 18-55 kit lens) and I went crazy. I started traveling around that time as well, and it was a great opportunity for me to get some cool photos and properly learn how to use a camera. When I moved to Vancouver I started photographing live music shows, doing some portrait work and just generally trying to make pictures that I liked. Soon I started getting a bunch of friends asking me to shoot their weddings, and Sabrina and I just sort of jumped into it. We worked crazy hard to get the business started that first year, and within 6 months I was able to quit my day job and take on photography full time. It was pretty much a dream come true at that point. Sabrina started with photography in high school where she loved to work in the darkroom developing her own film and making her own prints. Later on she worked at a Vancouver art gallery as their in house photographer, where she did all of their gallery still life shots, as well as their events and artist portraits. It was her idea to start the wedding photography business by the way, I would probably still be doing it for free right now without her belief, support, encouragement and ability to start a business.
How do you describe your style?
We describe our style as real and specifically "non-cheezy." We truly love real moments, and epic portraits, but we don't like doing "traditional" wedding photography. We have both always been creative people, and photography has definitely taken the place of our creative outlet. We offer full day coverage, because we love that it allows us to photograph a wedding day, and then have a full and complete, and real, story at the end of it. We are laid back people, and we like our clients to be as stress free as possible on their day, that really helps us to focus on our style of photography. We find that when our clients are at ease and going with the flow of the day, they hardly notice us, and that lets us get those raw, real images that we love.
What or who really inspires you?
Quite often we are inspired by each other to be honest. We also love to travel and being immersed in unfamiliar cultures and cities and places really inspires us. On a wedding day, virtually everything around us inspires us. The location, the bride and groom, the weather, really everything. I specifically have always loved the work of Lewis Hine and Irving Penn, their work really has had an influence on the way I see a photograph.
What are your top 3 tips for photographing weddings?
Our top three tips for wedding photographers would have to be:
1. Photograph what you like. Don't try to force it, don't try to be someone else, even if you love their work. Your best work is always going to come when you are not hindered by preconceptions of what or how you should photograph, so just be yourself.
2. Don't burn yourself out. We have seen too many photographers, even in our short time in the business, who have taken on waaaaaaay too much work, gone crazy with business, let their quality slip and killed their passion for photography. It may be tempting to take on every single job that comes your way, but just think about it first, and figure out what you can handle while still keeping your sanity intact and your quality high.
3. Don't let yourself get stuck in a rut. It's really easy once you figure out a way of working that suits you to just follow the formula and stop thinking about it. Avoid that at all costs. It's good to have consistency, and you don't wanna do ONLY super crazy experimental stuff for every shot you take at someone's wedding, but don't let yourself get stuck on the "safe and standard" road. Try new things, learn, progress, find new and exciting ways of working, and you will often be super stoked about the results.
To learn more about Dallas and Sabrina, visit them at dallaskolotylo.com.
From a very early age I loved taking pictures and looking at them in magazines and books, but the art of photography captured my heart when I was a teenager, on my first overseas trip to Wales. From that point, I began shooting with a little film SLR and having my friend model for me. In college I took some digital photography and visual communication courses as part of my communication studies major, and decided to pursue a career in photography. I became a legal business and took my first paid client at age 20, and it's been quite a journey and adventure over the past nine years.
I secretly bought a mail-order 35mm camera when I was 15, and took lots of ordinary photos of animals and nature for several years. Although I majored in art and studied photography in college, my career started in marketing and advertising, from the client service end. Then I had the most beautiful baby, found my old camera and realized how much I love photographing people.