Spotlight on CPC2015 Speakers Dylan and Sara

I have been a massive fan of the work of Dylan and Sara for a while now and was so excited when given the opportunity to interview them! CPC 2015 has such a stacked lineup of incredibly talented photographers and Sara and Dylan are no exception. Their work is quiet and sensitive and so inspiring to photographers all over the world.

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Dylan and Sara, thank you so much for taking the time to answer some of our questions! First off, tell us about home, both the city and the walls that currently surround you!

We’re new to Portland, Oregon. We are infatuated with the city and the people in it, it has been a huge change in lifestyle for us. We are very slowly furnishing our apartment so it’s a work in progress. We picked it for its amazing light, waking up to beautiful rays of sunshine is hard to beat.

Tell us about a typical weekday for the two of you!

Right now it’s a lot of coffee shops, afternoons in a local park, and walking around the city exploring. We’re trying to get as much hiking and cycling in as possible, when wedding season hits hard that will all change, we’ll be stuck in front of our screens a lot more.

Dylan what did you want to be when you grew up?

Fire fighter for sure. I had the coolest fire truck bunk bed. I also wanted to be a motocross racer, car racer, mechanic, etc.

Sara same question!

I wanted to be an actress. When I was younger I was in theatre and spent a little time in California going to auditions. My parents were always very supportive of my ambitions. I was always a dreamer.

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Tell us your story! How did you two meet and how did that end up leading to the photography team you now are?

We met when we were 18, skateboarding with mutual friends.  We were both into photography on very amateur levels. We credit our wedding photography with our need to document our first days together with disposable cameras.

How do you delegate tasks between the two of you, both at a wedding and the behind the scenes (editing, client management, paper work, etc)?
We try to keep things interesting for each other and change up responsibilities on the wedding day, but for the most part we are just quick to notice when we need to pick up the slack for each other. I’d say right now Sara is doing most of the photo editing; I’m playing with film cameras and doing most of the email/marketing.

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How do you feel your images represent who you are as people?
They say a lot about what we see in the world.  I think our photos reflect our love for adventure, nature, and people.

Tell us about the 4 “favourite” wedding photos you have on your website and why they are your favourites:

Dock First Look: I love this image because it was one of the first things that came into my head when I saw the dock in front of the bride’s getting ready cabin. I found a few minutes earlier in the day to setup the shot, taking an almost identical image with my iphone, without the bride and groom of course. I was pushing myself to use my 24mm lens that day, and I’m glad, it wouldn’t have been the same at 50mm.

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Reflection: We love to use natural reflections in our sessions.. and the wet sand and water near Cannon Beach worked perfectly for this shot. We both saw the shot at the same time and asked our couple to go stand on this rock, we’d built enough trust throughout the session that they didn’t think twice about it..a few seconds after we got the shot a wave came through and totally soaked the couple! 

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Double Exposure: We knew we wanted to utilize the movie theatre screen at the venue in some way for portraits on their wedding day. We bounced flashes off of it to create a clean white background for a double exposure. The couple wanted a double exposure and I wanted to do something a bit different with it, overlay the milky way. I kept the memory card with those portraits in my bag for a few weeks until there was a clear sky. We drove 30 miles out of town on a super cold night and got the overlays!

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Beach Portrait: Day after sessions and elopements are both so much fun photographically, the time constraints of a wedding day go completely out the window. Luckily we had both for this couple, it allowed us to go with slightly different looks and build a great connection with them.. which always leads to stronger portraits.

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What interests you in teaching and inspiring other photographers?
We were there not too long ago, we know how it feels to see the images in your head and not be able to create them.  Or see the successful photography business and not be able to do it. We want people to know that it’s possible to get where you want to be.

(If decided upon yet) Tell us about your topic for CPC 2015:

We learn so much about ourselves as photographers and as humans after every wedding season so the topic will likely evolve and change. Right now it’s looking like we’ll share our views on marketing your wedding business and what our thought process is in that regard.

Tell us your favorite thing about each others work:

Dylan: I love the quiet portraits Sara can get, especially when she plays with out of focus or movement.

Sara: Dylan is fearless and doesn’t like to take no for an answer. I love that he has a different perspective and is always pushing limits.

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Bucketlist of a person, place or thing to photograph:

Dylan: There are many places I’d like to see and photograph, I’m most looking forward to getting my motorcycle running and documenting those adventures. The Western US has my heart right now.

Sara: I want to see and photograph the midnight sun in Alaska.

If you had invisible powers and could photograph anything, what would you photograph?

Dylan: Everyday life of regular people. It would be interesting to see.

Sara: The set of Game of Thrones, they film in such beautiful locations.

If a movie was created about your lives, who would play you?

Dylan: Nick Offerman (mustache says it all)

Sara: Audrey Tautou (And it would be in French)

Finally, the greatest piece of advice you have ever received:

Dylan: UP UP DOWN DOWN LEFT RIGHT LEFT RIGHT B A.

Sara: You cannot be afraid to fail or you will never succeed.

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To see more work from Dylan and Sara, check out their website here.

Interview by Jennifer Moher

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