My name is Madeleine Robertson, I’m twenty years old and I currently reside in Portland Oregon.
I started photographing pretty young, my parents bought me a little samsung point and shoot camera when I was 14. I started taking tons of pictures, of people, but mostly of things and places - flowers, landscapes, beach views and so on. My parents and family liked them so much that I started making calendars of my photos and sending them as Christmas presents to friends and family. In 2010 or 2011 (I can’t quite remember), I bought myself a Canon Rebel XS off of craigslist. I started taking pictures more avidly, turning more and more towards portraiture. Then in 2012, my senior year of high school, I bought myself a Canon 60D and a 50mm (just the cheapy one!) and began shooting senior portraits for friends, and second shooting weddings. And about a year ago now, I bought myself a 5D Mark II (also off of craigslist, advice: craigslist is your best friend as an amateur photographer!) and I’ve been shooting weddings (still doing some second shooting as well as my own) and portraits of my friends and family.
I’m not sure on this one, I think what’s most important in your style is how you interact with your subjects. I talk a lot, I like to strike up conversations with my subjects and clients, because that’s how I started shooting. Before shooting weddings, clients and models, I was just snapping shots of my friends as we hung out. I think that having a running conversation (be it choppy - I know) while shooting helps keep a comfortable mood. I shoot high, I notice that, I’m tall, but I find myself holding my camera above my head a lot.
Showing my subject a picture right after it’s been taken. As someone who’s been involved in modeling, I can say that being shown a picture or two in the middle of a shoot that the photographer is excited about is wonderfully encouraging and empowering. I love seeing my subject’s face as they look at a picture I have just taken of them, even though it’s so common nowadays, there’s still something magical and delightful about seeing an image of yourself.
Anything and everything. It all depends on where you are, who or what you’re shooting and why. Whether you want to give yourself the credit or not, photography is an art, and we all have a vision, a concept in our heads when we hear the shutter click that we hope is captured. Sometimes, it’s the subject - the perfect look, or the lighting that gives the just-right shadow to complete the mood, or maybe it’s the fact that you were able to take it at all. That you got that shot, that the moment you’ve captured isn’t going to happen again just like it did. Those photos that give you the feeling of “I got it!” - those are the perfect photos.
If I could travel in time and take photos then, I would love to go back to the 1920’s. To find my way into those decadent extravagant parties and capture the lives of those people. I love the style that has come out of that era - art deco, and if I could, I would love to be able to capture it in genuine moments.
This interview was originally published on BehindTheCamera.co.