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Spotlight Photographer: Julie Irene Photography


1. How did you get started in photography and when did you start your business?  

I've always loved photography. At a very young age I was ripping out pages from National Geographic and creating frames for them and hanging them all over my bedroom walls. In high school and college I carried a camera with me to parties and in the halls. I was a finance major in college, and it never occurred to me to consider photography as a career. After graduating I went into Commercial Real Estate which lasted until the market went crazy and crashed in 2007, which is the same year I married my husband. The wedding photographer was the most important vendor for my wedding and I searched for the perfect one. That is when I realized photography could be a career option. At first I was designing wedding albums for other wedding photographers, and then I asked to shadow a few at weddings in exchange for wedding album design. In 2009 I shot my first wedding and loved owning my own business! It was a struggle and I worked so much more than I ever did working for a corporation. When my friends and I started having babies I began photographing newborns more. Now I mainly shoot newborns and a few weddings a year as well.


2. Where are you located? Do you have a studio space or do you shoot on-location?


I am located in San Clemente, which is in Orange County, California. I have a 500 square foot studio space that I absolutely love! It is located only a block from my house, in a little plaza that used to house the old city hall and jail. I'm told Richard Nixon used to be a regular at the restaurant there as well.


3. What do you shoot with and what are your favorite lenses?


I shoot with a Canon 5D Mark III - My 24-70mm is on my camera the majority of the newborn session. I do use my 85m 1.2 during my family shots as well as some of my bucket shots. I absolutely love the 85mm for the buckets when shooting straight on. It makes the background so blurry that it doesn't require much editing at all. I do use my 100mm macro lens at times as well. 


4. What drew you to newborn photography? Do you photograph anything else?


After having my own babies, I started getting asked to photograph more newborns and I just fell in love with it. It is definitely hard work, but in comparison to a photographing a wedding it is very relaxing to me.


5. How would you describe your style? Where do you find inspiration?


This one made me stop and think.... I always want the baby to be the main focus in a newborn image, but I don't shy away from color either. So, I guess I could say my style could be described as clean, vibrant and fresh. I get inspiration from a lot of places. In a store where I see a potential prop, fabric stores, magazines, movies, and other inspirational photographers.


6. Have you taken any photography workshops/training?


I've taken two wedding workshops (Jerry Ghionis and The Chrisman Studios) and I love watching CreativeLive on my secondary monitor while editing. I haven't done any newborn workshops yet. I think if I would do a newborn workshop I would want to do a 1:1 so I could focus only on where I think I need the most improvement.

7. Where do you like to shop for props? Do you have favorite vendors?


I do go to Hobby Lobby and Home Goods quite a bit for my buckets, bowls, etc. There is also an antique market once a month near me that I always find some great stuff. I get my fabric at the LA Fabric district, which is a bit scary, but so much fun. I knit a lot of my own hats and rompers, but I do absolutely love Adorable Props, Whippoorwill Nest Boutique, Dolly Priss, Kirinati - I love a lot of vendors, but these are the ones I can think of at the top of my head.


8. What are three things you wish someone would have told you when starting out?

Don't go buying every fabric, prop, new camera gear, until you know it's something you'll use. I've purchased so much fabric, props and camera gear that I have never used. Either the fabric was too scratchy, not stretchy enough, or the prop was too big, and the camera gear is too cumbersome for the benefit.



and work very hard. I'm confident success will come if you're all in  

9. What are your favorite things about How long have you been a member?


I think I've been a member since the very beginning. I love the community of such wonderful photographers and people! Everyone offers such great advice and it is such a wonderful community to come and learn.



10. Please share with us your Top 5 Favorite Images. Why are they your favorites?


This was tough to narrow done. So, I just had to pick a few from my more recent sessions I love these images for all different reasons. I love the color contrast and the smile in the first one. I love his sweet little face and cheeks in the third one. How can I not love the twin little girls in the second one! The simplicity and all the hair in the 4th image. The sibling shot with the gorgeous smiles!



11. What is your photography site and url?


Website  |  Facebook  |  NBP Profile | Google+ | Instagram



12. Lastly, tell us about YOU! Who are you other than a photographer?


I'm a mother to two amazing little girls that are now 3.5 and 5 years old. I most enjoy spending time with them, seeing them smile, laugh and loving life. They're is no greater joy to me than having my children be happy. I do enjoy a nice glass of wine at the end of the day to wind down.

Would you like to be our next Spotlight Photographer? Fill out our Spotlight Photographer form HERE! We look forward to featuring you!