I hope you're well and having an enjoyable summer in whatever way makes you happy!
We here at Firefly Institute HQ decided to give you a close up view of several of our photo campers. We thought you'd like to learn more about what kind of person attends a creative retreat or photo camp, and why?
Ready for her close up, here is Leigh Love:
Would you please tell us a little about yourself?
Sure! I was born and raised and still live in Oklahoma City. I have two children Jack (13) and Molly (10) and I've been married for almost 18 years. I am a landscape designer with my own design/build business. I have an interesting family dynamic, "officing" in my family art gallery The Howell Gallery along with my interior designer mother, architect father and gallery director sister. I feel very lucky to be surrounded with such creative vibes every day.
What's the most interesting thing about having the last name "Love"?
I would like to think that having Love as a last name makes me a little more approachable. I get comments every day about what a cool name I have. The worst thing is when I introduce myself "Leigh (pronounced Lee) Love" and people think I’m saying Lela. The alliteration of my name drives me crazy!
How do your landscape design and photography intersect?
I spend my days creating outdoor spaces for people who want to extend their living beyond the walls of their house, so being in nature is part of my daily routine. Not only do I get to draw plans and render them with beautifully colored markers, but I also get to be at the nursery selecting the plants. I spend time evaluating the light of an area and what textures and colors to put together. It has always felt natural to capture it with my camera as I experience it. I like to seek out beauty that might otherwise be overlooked. Being in nature with my camera is a meditative experience for me.
What is the Focusing On Life collaborative? How did you get involved?
Focusing on Life was started in January 2012 by a group of women photographers who were connected through Tracey Clark's Big Picture photography classes and Shutter Sisters. Our goal is to create a caring community for people who are passionate about photography and life. We hope for our blog to be a place that will inspire, teach, nurture, support and accept one another; a place where we can grow in our craft and as individuals. Fellow camper Kelly Ishmael is one of my FOL sisters :-). We all take turns blogging every other week.
What's your experience shooting for Stocksy?
I was accepted to Stocksy in April 2013 shortly after it was started. The first year there were 10,000 applicants and only 500 artists selected. I felt very honored to have been chosen (and honestly…a bit surprised!). What I love about Stocksy is that it's an artists' co-op. We are compensated fairly for our licensed images and also share in the profits. It's not easy shooting for stock as their aesthetic isn't always what I tend to shoot. I've learned that not every image I submit will be accepted, so it's been a learning curve for a sensitive soul like myself in dealing with rejection.
Why did you register for Firefly Institute? What part of photo camp are you most excited about?
I registered for Firefly Institute because I feel like I've stalled out a bit as a photographer. I want to jump-start that passion again and continue to learn and grow. I'm most excited about connecting with like-minded women and learning from each other. Plus five days to myself in Northern California in a camp-like environment with my camera sounds like heaven!
Thank you, Leigh, for sharing yourself and your world with us ... We look so forward to meeting you in person at camp!
You can see more of Leigh's photographic and landscape work on her website.