Featured Photographer

SDPPA Featured Photographer | Erica Harvey

Erica Lane Photography | http://ericalanephotography.com

Erica Harvey, of Rapid City, South Dakota, owns and operates Erica Lane Photography. Erica has been a member of SDPPA just over a year. She specializes in fine art landscape and wildlife photographic prints. You can find Erica and her booth at numerous art fairs across the region, “peddling her wares.” She also offers portrait services for people and pets. Erica shoots a few weddings a year and helps local businesses have a personal touch by offering commercial photographic services. Erica has been in business for 13 years. Here’s more of what she had to say.

What got you started in the photography profession?
I started doing photography when I was eight years old. My mom inherited a Canon AE-1 Program from my Dad and had been taking community education classes. I would watch her practice and my mom soon came to realize I was meant to have this camera. I won my first photo contest that year and have had a camera glued to my hand ever since. I have been doing photography on my own since 2005. In 2014 I re-branded my previous photography business to encompass more of my passion and began to gave it my full attention.

What do you specialize in?
My passion is saving our planet, so I specialize in nature and landscape work. My hope is that my images will inspire others to travel and have their own adventures. Only through travel can one realize how precious this place is and that it needs our help to protect it. I also teach and educate people about photography through my business called Tripod Tours.

What excites you most about your business?
I am most excited about the endless possibilities that the field of photography brings. I can explore so many realms and can create so many new and creative things.

What was your biggest “aha” moment that moved your business forward?
The biggest “aha” moment for me was understanding that to succeed in life one requires passion, to have passion you must love what you do. I have lived my whole life by this one proverb “Fall down seven times, get up eight”. No matter how many times you fail keep moving forward.

What was your biggest mistake, and what did you learn from it?
The biggest mistakes I made came when I didn’t ask for help or advice. Never be afraid to ask for help. Don’t be afraid to share advice. Help lift the entire photographic field up. Keeping things only to yourself hurts you and all of those around you. Embrace the idea that all of us are a team not an isolated island.

What is one tip or piece of advice you would offer a new photographer just starting out?
Find a mentor, someone you trust and admire. Surround yourself with a positive circle of friends that will support your dreams and keep pushing you to be your best. Join PPA learn from your peers. I wish I had found it so much sooner.

Have you won any awards or been featured anywhere?
In the last few years I have received many honors. Locally I won the Best in Show at the 2016 Dahl Mountain Photography Contest and won the Peg Sagen’s Peoples Choice award two years in a row. My image of some Yellowstone Bison donned the cover of Country Magazine as the Grand Prize Winner in 2016. I was recently named The 2017 South Dakota PPA Photographer of the Year and was named a Platinum Photographer of the Year by the National PPA chapter. The highlight of my career thus far was having my image of a fox chosen as a 2018 Grand Imaging Finalist.

Here are some of Erica’s favorite works.

 

 

Did you know if you are a member of SDPPA, you too can be featured on our website. To become a featured photographer, click here to complete the questionnaire.


October Featured Photographer | Johnny Sundby

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Johnny Sundby Photography | http://johnnysundby.com

Johnny Sundby, of Rapid City, South Dakota, owns and operates Johnny Sundby Photography. Johnny has been a member of SDPPA on and off for the past nine years. He specializes in portrait, commercial, photojournalism, landscape, sports and activity photography.


What got you started in the photography profession?
My father was a fine amateur photographer, then two years of high school photography which led to four years of photography as a work study job at my college as I received my English and Business degrees, then seven years of photojournalism at three different daily papers.

What excites you most about your business?
Creativity and autonomy. I think it is fun to actually make a decent living out of what most people consider a hobby. Also my studio is very nice — tall rock fireplace, 3800 square feet, 9 years old, rock and timber frame building, 28×35 foot camera room with north windows and 16 foot ceiling and hardwood floor. Cozy Cozy Cozy!

What was your biggest “aha” moment that moved your business forward?
Realizing that the best photographs don’t always make the most money! (Ha Ha!) Not that we shouldn’t always still be trying for that. Learning to run my business as a business and not an artistic hobby.

What was your biggest mistake, and what did you learn from it?
I am not sure if I can pinpoint any one mistake that was too tragic. Photography, unlike most occupations, is a fairly forgiving occupation. Mistakes are generally small and very fixable!

What is one tip or piece of advice you would offer a new photographer just starting out?
Make sure you charge enough for your services and your products but make sure the quality is there to justify it. Also be sure you learn how to invest wisely and pay yourself first!

Have you won any awards or been featured anywhere?
In 1995, I was named Best Photographer in South Dakota by Eyes on You Magazine. I was also featured in American Cowboy Magazine in an article my western photography. I have photographed for over 35 national magazines and newspapers, been in Court of Honor in SD four times, had a Loan Collection Print published in the national Professional Photographer Magazine, received the Augustana College Horizon Award for most accomplished alumnus within five years of graduation, am a frequent contributor to South Dakota Magazine, and sold over 50,000 coffee table books.

Author
Bomber Pilot Baby
Dance Instructor
Happily Ever After
Ice Climbers

Did you know if you are a member of SDPPA, you too can be featured on our website. To become a featured photographer, click here to complete the questionnaire.


 

March Featured Photographer | Pam Karlen

Pam Karlen, PhotographerPam Karlen, Photographer | http://www.pamkarlen.com

Pam Karlen of Howard, South Dakota owns and operates Pam Karlen, Photographer. She specializes in photographing high school seniors, but also enjoys photographing newborns, children, and families. Pam also spent the first 10 years of her career photographing weddings.

What got you started in the photography profession?

I started working with photography at a local newspaper. The owner said I should learn how to develop the film (yikes did I say film – yes I have been around a while). So I took a basic photography class. That class lead to a model shoot with a little girl imitating the “Kim Anderson” look of black and white hand coloring. When I developed those images in the darkroom it was like MAGIC – I was hooked. From there everything just snowballed into a business.

What excites you most about your business?

I love the magic of designing a session with my clients. To have a part in the emotions and magic of the day. A senior girl or boy to feel beautiful on the inside and to look awesome on the outside. The wonder and innocence in children’s eyes. Feel the pride of the moms. So I guess I would say the best part is the people I meet and become friends with.

What was your biggest “aha” moment that moved your business forward?

Oh I am sure I have had a lot of aha moments! I think after the second year of using a tiny bathroom as a dressing room and having to shoot through a doorway to get a full length image of a senior was when I realized that if I was going to do this for “real” I need to get serious and build a studio. All of our savings went into building a studio – I have never looked back.

What was your biggest mistake, and what did you learn from it?

I think I was one who always jumped on the “bandwagon” right away. There was some advantages to that, and yet I spent money that probably wasn’t necessary, although it sure was and is fun trying new ideas.

What is one tip or piece of advice you would offer a new photographer just starting out?

Learn how to meter the light and how to pose your subjects so they are flattering. Learn business, how to price for profit. If you are a business, you should be making money, someday your camera will wear out and you will need a new one. Take part in the SDPPA, the friendships formed and knowledge you gain from “seasoned” photographers will get you where you want to go faster than figuring it all out on your own.

Have you won any awards or been featured anywhere?

I can say I have been honored with the National Professional Photographers award of Service. I am grateful that my peers nominated me for such a distinguished award.

Here are some of Pam Karlen’s favorite works:

eve studio shoot-18 jesse weber-89 Mackenzie R-90 mariahvogue-22 copy taylor studio shoot-22

Did you know if you are a member of SDPPA, you too can be featured on our website. To become a featured photographer, click here to complete the questionnaire.

 


 

January Featured Photographer | Jeanne Hanson

Photoart By Jeanne | http://photoartbyjeanne.com

Jeanne Hanson of Elk Point, South Dakota owns and operates Photoart By Jeanne.  She earned her CPP(Certified Professional Photographer) certificate in 2013.  Jeanne specializes in seniors and families.  Her passion is character portraits.  With an art background Jeanne likes to take a portrait to a new level using digital skills.  Her goal is to become a digital painter.

Yes_I-_Still_Miss_Her

Yes, I Still Miss Her

 

 

Hanson_Jeanne_I've-Earned-Every-Wrinkle

I’ve Earned Every Wrinkle

 

Hanson_Jeanne_Can-I-Keep-Him

Can I Keep Him?

 

Hanson_Jeanne_Aw_You_Caught_Me

Aw You Caught Me