I love photography. From the first time I saw a camera to the first time I held it. I knew this was going to be my thing. I’d work at it and never stop learning it. Whether an iPhone, point and shoot, or a Canon Mark IV, I’d love it and show my best work.
Back to the beginning...
When I was in fourth grade I took an interest in cameras and photography. I was an extremely visual learner as a child, but I was unique in that I loved to read and use my imagination as well. I started off on a good old point and shoot canon camera that was just laying in our house. Despite my "enthusiasm" after several photos, I still could not figure out how to get “the shot”. I wanted to amaze my dad, like truly amaze. I mean like we all know that parents think anything their kid makes is amazing, but let’s be honest you know when they are like eh and WOW. My dad knew way more about design than I did, at the time, duh, and my literal goal was to truly amaze him. I would take photos and would run up to him to see if he liked them. I tried and tried and nope no sparks no nothing. Then one day my sister was putting on her shoes and it clicked. Every thing I was learning finally clicked and made sense. I showed my dad the photo and I got a genuine “WOW Ashley that’s like really good.” BOOM BABY!
After that my dad bought me books on photography, I’d read and shoot, read and shoot, read and shoot. Until it finally "clicked", yes, pun intended :), it was almost like breathing the angles, lighting, the composition, the emotion, the story. You can ask my parents, I breathed photography and most importantly learning. I never stopped cause there’s always someone to learn from, new technology, new perspectives—you can never learn enough. I shot my first wedding as a second shooter in 8th grade followed by family photo shoots and senior sessions. I competed in multiple competitions online, in state, out of state throughout high school and built quite the portfolio and small business. I went to media camps, did workshops with photographers, went to lunch with photographers, anything to improve and learn. I graduated high school and that’s all I wanted to do was eat, sleep, breathe photography. A story for another time, but photography was my safe place in high school and throughout my life, it was the one thing I could control. The thing that no one could take away from me, that I could be me and express who I was, even when I felt alone. Except I started losing my passion for it. I was so burnt out after high school I didn’t even want to touch a camera. I was so upset that my passion was slowly fading. I started getting grief in my business. People were constantly asking for things for free or for a discount like sure Becky, I would love to do it for free, but will “exposure” pay my bills? Oh yeah, and the next time you go to the grocery store, John, you should try asking them for you $200 dollars worth of groceries for free or for $25 dollars cause that sounds about right. (Can I just take a few second to say how rude this is?) I also had people steal my images and use them as their own. BTW all my images are copyrighted and we can go into legal matters but thats no fun huh, Jill? I also had people ask for my RAWs like that’d be better, um excuse me Susan but the last time I checked Chef’s don’t serve raw pork and photographers don’t serve RAW files because ya know safety. Because of this I started hating the thing I loved. I started declining sessions and clients if I remotely even felt grief. Cause life’s too short to deal with that drama and the best clients respect you and your business. I wanted to get my passion back, soooo I started back at the beginning—except we have youtube, podcasts, and blogs now. Reading, watching, shooting, reading, watching, shooting.
As of today, I’ve changed my perspective. Photography is my passion, my safe place, and my story. I don’t seek out business anymore. If people come to me, seek me out, and respect my work then 100% yes lets do this photo shoot. We’ll have a great time and you’ll get some amazing moments captured. But if you want to run the show, well, there are plenty of other photographers and if you can’t find anyone else…I’m sure your sister can take amazing iPhone shots. PSA to other photographers: PEOPLE WHO RESPECT YOU AND YOUR WORK ARE LIFE CHANGING AND THEY ALLOW YOU TO PRODUCE YOUR BEST WORK. But as a creative photographer, you can not grow if you do not work at it or allow yourself to create. I love hearing the click of the shutter, knowing that I’m here as a witness of this incredible life that I get to capture. Savoring life with every click.
So why photography? What is it about? Photography is the art of telling a story through a series of captured moments. But what makes photography so amazing is that it’s YOUR story. No one, I mean absolutely no one, sees what you see through your perspective. That’s what makes humans so great. Vision, Perspective, Story - the three things that make a photographer so great and unique. One thing that I try to convey through my photos is emotion. This is what separates a moment captured from a snap shot. Emotion is the gateway in which we launch our story. Photos in color convey life and joy. Black and White photos are a true art form you can evoke the purest emotion through blackened white—happiness, sadness, anger, joy.
Your life is your story. How do you want to tell it? If someone was capturing every moment of your life what would it show? I hope that it shows the good, the bad, and most important the in between, everyday moments. Because that’s where we live most of our days, the... but what makes your everyday YOUR everyday? I love telling my story, I hope it inspires people to live to the fullest, to never stop creating, to enjoy the now and everyday and to see the beauty in the midst of pain.
Here’s a couple special announcement for making it to the end of this blog! -Dad and I are currently redesigning Orellana Creative to give it a fresh look. But one thing we’ve run into is that people are now discovering that we do so much more than just photography! We do videography, web design, logo design, layout design, and tshirt design and production. So we’ll be recreating our website to display these offers more to everyone.
-We also have decided that we are going to be splitting our account on Instagram.
What she talking about? Let me explain. As photographers, we want to show you our stories but mine is different than Dad's and vice versa. We also acknowledge that some people would rather just see our personal life than our art. But our main reason is that we want an account specifically dedicated to our personal work and nothing else.
Dad has created two accounts: @hec_orellana (main account) @hectororellana_ (art account)
I have two accounts now too!
@ashley_orellana (main/blog account) @ashleymorellana (art account)
@orellanacreative will remain as our HUB for if anyone would like to inquire about sessions :)
-Blogger Life is BACK! I had so many people ask for me to bring the blog back so here we go! The blog is going to be called Hello Humans! New blogs will be posted around the 1st and 15th of every month. This is because I want to give you all my very best work and let’s be honest blogs take a lot of time and thinking. I’d rather have amazing content twice a month than mediocre content every week.
Well thats all for now! As always, leave a comment below on any tips or encouraging lessons you’ve developed as a photographer or any future topics for blog posts! Be sure to give a follow as well!
Thanks Humans! You’re #1 fan, Ashley