From kid photographer to composition genius, this woman’s got mad camera skills.
Every Tuesday, we feature an active photographer on our site. This week, we’re featuring Kati Best—full-time UX designer, part-time photographer. Perpetual creative. Kati has been Kandid.ly’s ambassador for a new series on Cincinnati Mom Blog: Motherhood at Dawn (or Dusk), where families invite her into their home to take real candids of their family being in the moment, having the everyday captured.
We sat down with her and asked her about what inspires her, and what makes her want to be a photographer on Kandid.ly.
Current Camera: Nikon D600
So, what got you into photography?
I had a point and shoot, and when my family vacationed to Mexico, I couldn’t stop taking pictures of, well, everything. The ocean! The flowers! The sky! After seeing the kinds of photos I took, I instantly wanted an upgrade. So I started saving my pennies, and after a summer of babysitting and working at the concession stand, I graduated with my DSLR.
What did you first start taking pictures of?
Puppies. Really, really bad pictures of puppies.
Ha, and when did you start getting good?
Once I was given a 50mm lens. So then, I began taking much better puppy pictures. And then kitten pictures. In 2009, I had an entire album dedicated to my kitten. No shame.
So you were the cat lady?
I prefer “kitten girl.”
When you’re walking around without a camera, what makes you wish you had it?
Ah, people—how they interact with each other. Also, when there’s amazing light. Oh, when there’s great light, I just want my camera immediately.
Are people harder to take pictures of than puppies?
Honestly, puppies are actually harder to shoot because they won’t listen to you. So, they probably taught me some patience with people.
What kind of photography do you want to try?
I’d love to try out newborn photography. That’d be awesome to add to my portfolio. So book me, moms!
What’s the best way to get people to relax?
I just try to make them comfortable. I try to get them to laugh. Sometimes I even tell them to fake laugh—which usually makes them actually laugh at themselves. At first, it’s maybe a bit stiff and awkward, but after time…people warm up. They always do. I love taking candids because people quickly forget I’m there.
I’ve heard that people’s personalities come out more when they’re in front of a camera. Would you say this is true for you when you’re behind a camera?
Ha! Well, I’m like same person, just with a camera. I might be a little more sassy, though. “Like… no you need a move.” I guess having a camera makes me a bit more bold.
What do you like about Kandid.ly?
Easy access for people to find photographers that they want to use—it’s a simple, painless process. I feel like it should have been invented already! I also love how we’re getting people to rethink when they use a photographer. I hope more people start to do things like the Motherhood at Dawn series.
How do we get people to rethink when they use photographer?
We need to show them something that they’re going to love.
What would be your advice for people who want to learn photography?
Follow tons and tons of bloggers. Discover and learn from people who know their craft. It will help you aim high. That’s what I think is the most important: constantly aim higher than what you’re capable of.
Thanks, Kati! You’re awesome.
I’m working on it!
If you’re interested in being featured, or you’ve had an amazing experience with one of our photographers and you think the world needs his/her camera skills, feel free to contact us!