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Ask Lindsay Adler Anything! - PPA Today

Ask Lindsay Adler Anything!

By Sarah Ackerman

Last week Imaging USA Speaker Lindsay Adler hosted a two day Ask Me Anything! 

Lindsay is widely known for her fashion photography that gives her lookbooks, ad campaigns and clients a clean, bold, graphic look that is uniquely her own. But her passion doesn't stop there. Her love of teaching brings her to Imaging USA where she will teach "Fashion Lighting Techniques to WOW Your Portrait Clients". In her program, you can learn how to bring the fashion world to your portrait clients in your own way. 

Here are some of our favorite moments from Lindsay's Ask Me Anything. 

On getting a big break:
Ahhh... the big break. You know. I think that is totally a myth. I never had a big break... I've had a long break (back breaking work!). I've just been working bit by bit to improve connections and become a better photographer. Basically I lived in upstate New York and did online networking with other beginning makeup artists and wardrobe stylists who lived in NYC. I would travel to NYC and put together shoots. Then with these better images, I would work to approach better/more talented artists and keep building and growing. What is great is when they get a contact from a magazine or celebrity, they share it with me-- because we are a team!

On post processing:
To begin with I did ALL of my own processing work during my first four years as a fashion photographer. I didn't have the money to outsource retouching at all, plus I wanted to add my own 'style' to it. Basically I watched a lot of YouTube to be honest and made friends with photography students taking classes and asked them for their top tips! Now that I have a style for retouching, when I outsource they know to match the look and feel that I like. Just to give you an idea, the retouchers I hire range from $35 an image to $225 depending on what they are working on. Right now I outsource about 60% of my retouching simply because I'm too busy and it's worth the cost!

On the three most important things in becoming an artist:
1. Discovering your creative process: Sounds weird but honestly I never considered myself an artist. Forever really... I considered myself more of a photo technician. A nerd. A tech person. So that was how I approached photography. That's even how I approached creativity. When I came up with a creative idea, I created a formula - How did I get to this idea? How can I repeat that process for success? Finally when I realized I was creative, it was because I knew the steps I needed to create to come up with new ideas. 

2. Don't always try to please others: Sure, as portrait photographers we want to make other people happy. But when you are so worried what all the other photographers or artists or people in your town think ALL THE TIME, it is paralyzing. You can't create or try anything different because you are afraid of what they think. 

3. Experiment all the time: We all get so comfortable. We find our favorite lighting, our favorite poses, our favorite approaches to photography... and then we stick there. We don't move. I use 'my favorite' gear, lighting, poses, etc. in order to make sure I get a good shot. Once I got a decent shot, I try something different that might miserably fail. But that 'failure' is okay because I already have a decent shot using my usual techniques and I may have the opportunity to learn and discover something incredible with that experimentation!

We hope you found Lindsay's advice helpful! And remember to catch her live at Imaging USA in Atlanta! Early bird pricing ends December 17, so save $50 and sign up today at

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Sarah Ackerman manages all things social media for PPA and Imaging USA. When she's not living on the internet, she loves improv comedy, going on wilderness adventures, gallivanting around the globe, knitting, wood working and yoga. 

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About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Professional Photographers of America (PPA) published on December 15, 2015 7:59 PM.

PPA Studio Makeover: Krista's Final Check-In was the previous entry in this blog.

Be More Social at Imaging USA! is the next entry in this blog.

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