Kaite, of Shutterbug Photography, found her love of photography at a young age turning it into a career. Located in Santa Barbara, California, Shutterbug is one of the newest additions to SnapKnot! Get to know this photographer a little better and see some of her candid wedding photos:
1) Tell us a bit about yourself.
I am a California native who relocated back to Santa Barbara after living in Austin, TX for the past five years. And yes, it feels amazing to be back home. My husband and I just celebrated our 10th year of being together. We met in high school (awww) and have been together ever since. I am a mom to two fur-babies: Mr. Meowgi (feline) and Princess Destructor (canine).
2) Why did you choose to become a photographer?
When I was a kid, my parents went on vacation to Reno. Great place for adults, terrible place for kids. I basically lived in the arcade for three days. By the time we left I had so many tickets I could buy practically every item in the award case. One thing I ended up buying was a bright yellow Kodak camera. It wasn’t fancy or amazing, but it was all mine. I can’t tell you how many rolls of film I went through with that Kodak. I wasn’t selective in my shots – bushes, dinner dishes, friends – anything was worth taking a picture in my book. Fast forward 15 years and I have graduated from college with a degree in Interior Design. Love, love, love design. But after a few years of designing, realized I missed photography.
3) How long have you been a photographer?
Shutterbug Photography was created in 2009. I have been photographing people and places since I knew what a camera was though. But since those images were less than amazing, let’s just say 2009. That was when I really began to focus my energy on taking well-balanced images. I felt comfortable in the creative aspect of photography, so I took a few courses at UT Austin to brush up the technical side. My only regret was those courses were in the summer…and it is really hot in Texas during the summer.
4) How would you classify your style of photography?
I suppose the closest term would be photojournalism. I love creative shots, but it is really important to me not to miss any details. Brides, grooms, and wedding planners – they all put a ton of energy into making that one day the best it can be. Missing a single of minute of all that hard work seems wrong. Posed shots are definitely a part of the wedding story, but I prefer candid moments if they are already happening.
5) Who or what are some of your influences on either a personal or professional level?
She probably doesn’t know it, but a friend of mine from grade school is a major influence. Her studio is called Kathleen Amelia, www.kathleen-amelia.com, and does really amazing work. It is great to see another person from your hometown (ours was really small) doing well. I also think she pushes herself to go outside the box, where some people are afraid to even touch the edges.
6) Do you have any good wedding stories?
I have tons of great wedding stories. One that cracks me up was a bride and groom that had their reception at a different venue than the ceremony. Between the ceremony and reception they asked their guests to “find something to do” because they were going to hang out with some of the wedding party to “relax” before the reception. I of course went straight to the reception to being photographing the decorations, catering, etc. When I arrived, there were no decorations, no catering, nothing. The bride and groom finally showed up, over an hour later than what they had specified. By that time the catering from the local Whole Foods (totally not kidding) had arrived and people were getting agitated. I can honestly say that was one wedding where getting detail shots were hard – because there were no details planned! If you are planning a wedding, try to put in a smidge more effort than this couple did.
7) What’s your preferred type of camera equipment?
I am a Nikon lady! This will sound silly, but I like the way a Nikon feels in my hand. Canon feels like plastic to me. Just odd.
8) What would you recommend for a couple just starting their search for a wedding photographer?
Meet with several photographers before you commit to one. It shouldn’t come as a surprise, but you will end up spending a good deal of time with this person or persons. You should really connect with them and know that you are the same page about the style you are looking for in your images. Your wedding is one of the most important events you will ever celebrate. Hiring a professional photographer and not your cousin Bob’s friend who bought that great camera last year, will be money well spent.
9) Any fun personal facts we should know about you?
I am addicted to William-Sonoma cookbooks. If you were to count them all up, I think I have over 40 at this point. It started a few years back when I found my first one at a Ross Dress for Less. They all have wonderful photos of each recipe and the covers are really pretty. Honestly, I am not even a good cook. But I love all the photos!