Elite Photography's Sara Delak discovered her initial passion for photography while snapping shots of wildlife in locations such as Yellowstone National Park. She dreamed of working for National Geographic and traveled the globe with her camera, but eventually realized that home was where her heart really was.
So Sara opened Elite Photography, where she's broadened her skills dramatically shooting portraits, sports, pets, boudoir settings, and weddings. She still finds time to travel the world and has even put together a bucket-list book, Been There, Done That, to help people check off activities they most want to do in life, such as taking a gondola ride in Venice or napping in a kangaroo pouch in Australia. The book showcases photos Sara has taken doing the listed activities.
Bearing the titles of Master of Photography and Photographic Craftsman from Professional Photographers of America, David and Ally McKay embody the keen vision and aesthetic prowess that separated good photographers from great ones. They share these skills during classes at McKay Photography Academy, where they train eyes, fingers, and imaginations to work in tandem as a snapshooting dream machine. Their classes help aspiring photographers progress from neophytes to seasoned pros; the Beginning Digital Photography course teaches students to harness the intricacies of their instruments, and the Pro Academy offers inside tips on how to successfully snap wedding portraits, pose recent grads, or tease out candid emotions. When not busy instructing the next generation of shutterbugs, David and Ally also devise photo safaris, which send small teams of photographers to capture shots of famed landmarks including San Francisco's Golden Gate Bridge; the Lincoln Memorial of Washington, DC; or Yosemite's 60-foot statue of Yogi Bear.
Skilled, friendly photographer Katie Fears captures sensual, classy images that highlight her subjects’ best features in a private boutique studio located within the Semple Mansion. Models relax with a complimentary glass of bubby before they slip into three ensembles, pairing thigh highs with corsets or with favorite brachiosaurus costumes. Although not covered by this deal, patrons can pay an additional fee for a professional to coax locks into elegant coiffures and apply cosmetics with an artistic touch. Images from the shoot undergo a skilled retouching that rivals the improvements chiselers made on Mount Rushmore. Prints begin at $75, and subjects can acquire a leather-bound book, mounted art canvas, or DVD with all their images and print rights for an additional cost.
Laura Monahan comes from an artistic family, and spent her youth practicing sculpture, oil painting, pottery, and what turned out to be her ultimate passion: photography. Her ability to preserve candid moments has left an indelible impression—she has a published portfolio on three continents and product lines appearing at national retailers such as Hallmark and JCPenney. Laura’s photo shoots always take place outdoors, capturing newborns, older kids, families, and makeshift popsicle-stick families in soft, natural lighting and poses that never appear unnatural. Her settings span the country from San Diego’s foamy beaches to Denver’s red-rock sunsets and into the Midwest’s autumn leaves.
In the midst of an industry so saturated in emerging technology that fierce competition is law, the Twin Cities Photography Group operates as a cooperative to nurture the artistic development and technical skills of amateur and professional photographers. To expand the photographic community and foster a passion for creativity, the group keeps a clean studio space for picture snappers to host shoots and workshops.
Skilled instructors educate the public on basic photography fundamentals and camera-specific tips that allow students to get the most from advanced equipment without threatening to cut its weekly allowance. Regular meet ups assemble members for photo walks at area parks and photogenic seasonal events, such as air shows and free outdoor concerts.
Lara Olson was unhappy with the quality of art education her children were receiving in school. Taking matters into her own hands, she decided to open KidCreate Studio as a place where youngsters can exercise their creative muscles while practicing the visual arts in a fun learning environment. The studio’s curriculum immerses students in the kaleidoscopic world of art through professional lesson plans, incorporating media ranging from watercolor paints and pencils to clay and cloth. Birthday parties at the studio keep children thoroughly engaged with hands-on activities and themed projects, and play groups lasting up to three hours give kids enough time to make new friends or think up at least a dozen more imaginary ones.
For lmj originals owner and photographer Lisa, the best part of photography is finding an unassuming corner of the world that becomes something beautiful when committed to film. Each day, she sets out to take transformative photos, revealing her subjects' intrinsic beauty or light allergies during in-studio or on-location shoots. Lisa's natural approach sets clients at ease and helps her capture candid poses during family portraits, carefree moments at weddings, and evocative pinups during boudoir shoots.