Meet our girl, Natalie Allen! Not too long ago, Natalie hosted a photography class for the entire Bloguettes team and we ended up learning A LOT. When we were in need of a lifestyle and portrait photographer for our InstaCamp in May, Natalie was a shoo-in! Take one glance at her Instagram and it’s clear to see that this photographer has a distinct ability to make her subjects feel comfortable and capture their radiant personalities on film. To see what she’ll be teaching at InstaCamp, keep reading!
Tell us about yourself!
Hello there! I’m Natalie Allen. Twenty-something dreamer + do-er who’s running with the wolves. Forever pained with curiosity from a terrible case of wanderlust.
Currently residing in the sunny state of Arizona as a full-time student at ASU double majoring in Global Studies and Anthropology. Meanwhile, I’m a full-time photographer and part-time RYT-200 HR yoga instructor teaching kids classes and private lessons. Surrounded by beautiful friends and family, I am in constant awe of the beauty around me. In my free time, I like to macramé home decor, hike mountains, collect post-cards, critique the latest film in theatres, and tend to my garden.
Have you ever had professional photography training or did you teach yourself?
I never had any professional teaching experience for photography (or much of art in general, tbh). In fact, I’m almost a graduate from college with a double degree in Global Studies and Anthropology — which obviously holds zero relevance to the artistic form of photography. I believe the best learning resonates most from personal experience, character, and trial-and-error.
How would you define lifestyle photography?
Lifestyle photography is an intriguing concept of art that depicts the ins and out of humanity: how you spend your mornings, the tea you drink from a gas station during a road trip, or candids from a backpacking trip in the mountains. To me, it’s a style that best represents authentic moments with a creative twist.
Are you a fan of candid photography or posed photography?
Definitely candid. Whenever I have a shoot, I always let mine and my subjects’ creativity flow organically. Rarely do I ever roll with a meticulous plan, I always ride the wave on how I feel at the time I hold my camera.
What’s the most important thing to remember when you’re shooting portraits?
Lighting is the most important aspect of any photograph (especially portraits), but a trick I always like to go back to is: “If the picture doesn’t look good now, just take one step closer.” Works every time!
What do you do to make your photo subjects feel comfortable in front of the camera?
It’s vital for the photographer to get acquainted with her/his subject. Talk to them, get to know them, laugh with them, and talk about each other’s interests on the day of the shoot if you haven’t gotten to know them already. Once we open up to each other as human beings, our art flows more organically and compatibly.
Do you have any tips for capturing someone’s personality on camera?
Before I start to shoot someone (if I’m not already capturing a candid moment), I always tell them to move within their own comfort levels. I purposefully choose not to be too pushy with my subjects because I want them to choose how to take my direction.
Do you edit photos differently depending on the kind of personality/theme your subject wants to portray?
Yes, definitely! Each and every shoot or photograph I take holds its one unique story. I like to be able to keep that story’s integrity by allowing each one to be showcased in different perspectives.
What is your number one tip when it comes to photography?
Only shoot what you’re passionate about, hands down.
Can you give us a sneak peek into what you’ll be teaching at InstaCamp?
It is my honor to be teaching at the Bloguettes InstaCamp this coming May as a director for lifestyle/portrait photography. I’ll be discussing the inner linings of what it means to hold unique taste for a creative approach to capturing candid moments. This will include proper lighting, angles, perspectives, marketing, and the professional means it takes to become a photographer that creates meaningful, impacting work.
Interested in learning all of Natalie’s tips in a face-to-face setting? Click here to learn more about InstaCamp on May 21st in Palm Springs!