I have been a part of an amazing organization this past year called The Rising Tide Society. Through this, I have met so many creatives all striving to make in their businesses and to achieve their goals based all around their passions in the creative field. This group has helped me in so many ways, and every day, everyone inspires me! We have meetings monthly and collaborate on many different things. We help each other and cheer on one another! I love this group of people and I am thankful to be a part of The Rising Tide Society.
Recently, I met with Shawn Potter of Creative Clover Photography for a portrait session. Shawn is just starting his photography business and contacted me for head shots! The day we picked, it happened to have snowed but that did not stop us from shooting. The snow added a nice natural color to our session, and you would never know that Shawn couldn’t feel his hands! With this session, we talked a bunch and I formulated a little interview about his business so that you can learn a little more about Shawn and Creative Clover Photography! Our session was held at the Horticultural Center at the Plymouth Plantation. It’s a really nice area in the town of Plymouth where in the warmer months, weddings are held here
And now, let me introduce, Shawn!
Ali B: Hi Shawn, can you tell me a bit about yourself and your company?
CC: Creative Clover Photography was a name that I thought of for my photography business a few years ago because it encompassed who I am: a ‘Creative’ a photographer, and a ‘Clover’ due to my strong 1/4 Irish blood (love you Nana!). I didn’t really know what I wanted to focus on early on, but I had a strong feeling that I wanted to work with families, as mine is such a strong part of my life and who I am.
Ali B: Do you have a main focus/specialty in your photography? why have you chosen to go in that direction?
CC: My intended focus in photography is in family lifestyle and newborns. I feel like if I can get precious shots of a family’s little one, and then get right back to portrait shots of the kids and parents, then that is a phenomenal honor right there! I love the idea of newborn photography because I know the energy required to deal with such a small, delicate life, as I have grown up with all kinds of animals and have been able to grow a sensitive touch to life. Dealing with a baby, though, is not like an animal at all, that I understand! This is why I am going to shoot several model calls to practice all that I can.
Ali B: What is the most awkward moment you’ve experienced while on the job?
CC: Until I get really good at it, changing my lenses out and forgetting to take the lens cap off is always an instant humbler: “Haha I got this! . . . . (click) annnnndddd the lens cap is still on!”
Ali B: If you could shoot any celebrity wedding (past, present or future), who would be the lucky couple?
CC: I’m sure its too late, but if I could go back in time I’d love to get shots of William and Kate’s gorgeous little girl!
Ali B: What tips or advice can you give to couples who are looking to hire a photographer to cover their big day?
CC: Don’t necessarily look for a photographer for their style, because once you shop around for photographers a lot of work can seem very similar. Instead, go with someone that you KNOW you and your partner will connect with. Find a photographer who welcomes your creative input and wants you to be as involved in the process as possible. I can’t image anything worse for your wedding experience than to be dealing with a photographer who looks at you like a dollar symbol instead of a friend who is honored to be capturing your special day. Connection, like with marriage, is one of the best establishments towards a great relationship.
Ali B: How did you develop an interest in photography?
CC: How do any 20 year-old hear about anything ever, my phone (haha). No, but in all seriousness it did start with me finding unique ways to photograph nature and things around me on my phone. Then my dad helped me upgrade to a small camera from Walmart, to now where I currently use my Canon Rebel T5. What drew my to photographs was the candid ‘Ah-ha!’ moment you feel when you see a brilliant shot you didn’t think you would get. When I would (and still) watch movies, I love the emotion I take from a film. To go and get that same feeling from taking a photograph myself is unlike anything i’ve experienced before.
Ali B: What equipment to use?
CC: I currently use a Canon Rebel T5 with kit lenses. An 18-55mm f2.8-5.6, 70-300mm f/4-5.6 and a fixed 50mm f/ 1.8-5.6.
Ali B: Do you collaborate well with second shooters or assistants?
I would be more than happy to shoot with someone and/ or collaborate with another photographer/assistant. The best way to learn our craft is by shooting with each other and learning from each other.
Ali B: Do you have any formal training?
CC: Not specifically with photography, but I majored in Communications in Film, Video and Media Studies from BSU, so I know my way around a camera and have experience getting creative shots. I also shoot and practice a TON!
Ali B: What i something that Inspires you?
CC: The happiness found in the kind of life that I strive to live for, for myself and a family. I am inspired by families and the genre of love. From love comes so much good and I am simply inspired by what is good. I have also found empowerment and inspiration through Dr. Eric Thomas Ph.D. who has multiple published videos and books under etthehiphoppreacher, he can be found most commonly on YouTube, Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.
Ali B: What does photography mean to you?
CC: Photography means the world to me as much as living life does. When I call myself a photographer, I feel like I am expressing who I am and what I love. I am simply capturing the things I love and showing it to the world. I feel like at this point, if I were to do anything else professionally, not dealing with a camera, I would not be true to who I am and who God has made me to be.