Friends of Two Bright Lights and dynamite photographer duo Devin and Kathryn Robinson, of Anchor & Veil Photography, are kicking off this week’s member spotlight.
Anchor & Veil Photography is the husband and wife team of Devin and Kathryn Robinson, based in Charlotte, North Carolina. As their business is the sum of two different personalities, Anchor & Veil Photography’s aesthetic incorporates those distinct influences. The name of the studio represents this dichotomy: the anchor is a masculine symbol, but a veil is a delicate, fragile accessory. Devin and Kathryn aspire to produce photography that is intimate and beautiful like a fine, hand-stitched, silk veil. At the same time, they want it to be bold and unique. Below, the photographers reflect on what they’ve learned shooting weddings and family portraiture now that they’ve been in business for three years.
How Did You Get Started?
My wife and I have no formal photography education, but we have a genuine passion for it. I spent half of college as a broadcasting and cinema major, then changed my major. I bought my first camera then just to shoot around for fun. Soon, friends asked for portraits and suddenly I had booked my first wedding. At that point, I had not even considered wedding photography as a profession.
I charged $500 for my first wedding, which I shot alone, and moved on. I guess I did ok, because I soon had another inquiry and it took off from there. After I got married, Kathryn joined me on some shoots and she was hooked. Our first year in business, 2012, we shot three weddings. In 2013, we booked 15. It’s only November of 2014 and we already have 15 weddings for 2015!
Although we aren’t very outdoorsy people, we love shooting what the Lord and his creativity has on display. We are inspired by anything in nature. Some people love shapes and patterns, we love trees, rivers and mountains! I think that challenges us to create images that are emotional but incorporate a dramatic sense of place. Guys like Benj Haisch, Fer Juaristi, Two Mann and Stan Flanigan (A Fist Full of Bolts) do this beautifully, I am constantly looking to those guys for inspiration. We try to walk the fine line of finding inspiration from other photographers, while not becoming a carbon copy of them.
Devin and Kathryn’s Top Pro Tips
1. Never stop learning. This is huge. It’s easy to say “you must have a passion for photography.” But what does that really mean? I think at the core of it, it is a desire to get better and better. There has to be a desire to improve each day and to reach a goal, set a new one and conquer it. Learn new things, expand your abilities. I am addicted to educating myself about new techniques, watching CreativeLive sessions and taking workshops.
2. Never be complacent. Meaning, with the clients you have now, push to be better. Strive for perfection because one day that huge gig you have been waiting for will come and you want to be ready for it. Will you be able to knock it out of the park because you honed your craft and were faithful to the little things you had been given? Or will you completely flop because you didn’t strive to be your best at every opportunity?
3. Seek out mentors. I once heard someone say, “A smart man learns from his own mistakes, a wise man learns from others”. The thing that has made the biggest impact on the success of our business comes from other photographers like Richard Israel, Lauren Jackson and Crystal Stokes who took their time to invest in us. Learning to be humble and teachable are some of the hardest things to do, but it can make a world of difference. There is nothing like having incredible photographers helping you to improve your work! I challenge you to take their advice and see what happens.
Anchor & Veil Photography
Devin and Kathryn captured lots of heartwarming moments at this elegant Huntersville, North Carolina Rural Hill wedding. From sneak peeks before the ceremony to special looks exchanged by the bride and groom at the altar, Anchor & Veil Photography deftly photographed the wonderful day.
In addition to weddings, Anchor & Veil Photography shoots family portraits. This one was particularly notable for Devin and Kathryn, as they were tasked with incorporating the family’s pet chickens. There is a palpable sense of joy that shines from this session, accompanied by a great use of color, thanks to mom, dad, big sis and little brother’s vibrant outfits.
Devin and Kathryn’s Two Bright Lights Experience
“For many photographers, this question is answered in a more direct way, like booking clients from the blogs they are published on. But I think getting published helps to bring credibility to your name. A bride can look, see you have been published and know that your work comes recommended. A lot of blogs have a certain standard that your work has to meet before you can be published. Getting featured on those sites, to brides, means that your work is of a higher caliber. I think this brings a peace of mind to the bride and helps to establish trust when making the decision to book a photographer.
Two Bright Lights has been incredible. It helps to streamline the process of getting our work out there to blogs, but at the same time helps the blogs to find quality photographers that they might not have ever discovered on their own. Two Bright Lights is a genius idea and incredible for the photography industry.”
Thank you Devin and Kathryn! To see more of their gorgeous wedding portraiture, check out Anchor & Veil Photography!
Photo of Devin and Kathryn Robinson courtesy of Lauren Jackson Photography