"Spending my time photographing jobs or marketing myself and my business are what make me money. It's just a plain smart business decision!"
Can you tell us how you got started in photography?
My dad was a professional photographer when I was growing up. I always had an interest in the arts but had trouble finding my "medium." When I was about 14, my dad put a film Nikon FM10 camera in my hands and I never looked back.
What was the first camera you ever purchased?
Other than the Nikon FM10 camera that was given to me by my dad (and which I still own to this dad - I can't seem to part with it), the first official camera I ever purchased on my own was my first digital camera, the Nikon D100
What's the latest piece of equipment you bought?
I'll admit it - I'm not that into gear. I ride my gear until it's dead because unless it's going to make me more money right then and there, I usually won't buy it. That being said, I have been doing more studio portrait work so I recently bought the Profoto B2 and lighting modifiers. I'm also slowly adding some Sigma art lenses to my gear bag over time as I'm super impressed with the quality they produce for the price point
On average how many pictures do you take per wedding?
Usually around 2000-3000
How do you find inspiration?
I get a lot of my inspiration from my clients themselves. I really like to create images that speak to them and are a true representation of their personalities. I do a lot of listening to my clients and reading between the lines. I'm also greatly inspired by my passion for the great outdoors and nature. I love incorporating my couple into beautiful scenic shots!
What would be your dream assignment and where would it be?
Oh man. That's hard. Honestly, there are still so many places in the world I haven't been that any assignment anywhere in the world would be a dream. Anytime I'm lucky enough to get to travel and get paid for it. I feel incredibly humbled.
How do you spend your day away from the camera?
My husband and I love to take our dog, Nala, hiking to relax on weekends or days off. There are so many amazing locations nearby us in Virginia. We usually finish off the day with a visit to a nearby winery or brewery. We love craft beer and have occasionally been known to brew it ourselves!
How much time did you spend editing each week before The Image Salon?
Too much! Honestly, I'd been outsourcing for years before finding The Image Salon. The biggest difference though was that with other companies, once I'd get back my galleries, I'd still spend an additional 8-12 hours reediting what they had already done. Once Betina and I got in a rhythm at The Image Salon, my editing time has been cut down to about 2 hours, as I still like to go through a few of my favorite images and put those special, "Michelle Lindsay" touches on them :)
Why did you decide to outsource? Why did you choose The Image Salon?
Outsourcing just makes sense to me. Spending my time photographing jobs or marketing myself and my business are what make me money. Sitting behind a computer adjusting color and contrast doesn't. It's just a plain smart business decision. After using a few other companies throughout the year, I decided to try The Image Salon because I was familiar with the level of quality and consistency that Davina and Daniel produce. I knew if they put their name behind something, it was sure to be something good! I loved that I would be assigned a personal editor, the same person every time. After a few wedding seasons now, I really feel like Betina and I have this awesome rhythm together and it just works. She knows what I want without me having to tell her. I also feel as though the company is commitment to it's photographers and making the experience the best possible. The level of communication is top notch and I always feel informed. I've also been impressed with the changes I've seen implemented throughout the years, which says to me that they are listening to their clients' feedback and making adjustments and changes as need be.
Now that you outsource, how has your business benefited from the extra time you have?
When I started with The Image Salon, I was only doing weddings and a few portraits here and there. Since moving all of my wedding editing to them, I've really been able to expand the portrait side of my business because I have more free time in my schedule to book sessions during the weekdays when I would normally be stuck behind a computer editing! I don't think I'd be able to be running both a wedding and portrait business if it wasn't for outsourcing to The Image Salon and knowing that they have my back when the time comes to deliver quality edited images to my wedding clients.