This is Hanna. We share a lot of things. Things that have long included an aptitude for art, great hair, and half our genetic material. Things that now include a house, a city, and a career path.
My sister and I have long been collaborating on random art projects. She has great taste and a lot of talent. We both danced, acted in plays, and produced endless masterpieces that found their way to the esteemed refrigerator-front gallery. We've spent the last several years making any excuse to see each other and then staying up until all hours of the night playing the piano and singing harmony. Now I'm thrilled to have spent the last six weeks as roommates and office mates. We are now collaborating on my greatest artistic love, Photography.
I can't imagine a better collaborator.
My photography business, after many years of slow and steady work, is really starting to accelerate. Hanna could not have picked a better time to make the move from Tulsa, OK to Denver. In the last few months, she's read piles of photography textbooks, learned editing software, gone on at least 8 photoshoots with me, created a filing system, attended a wedding show and given me more than a few peptalks. She keeps leaning over and dropping useful hints like she's my second brain: "that image needs a little more vignette," "the sky looks strange, but only behind his head." "Did you forget to take a photo of the ring?"
True story: I picked up photography very quickly. I bought a camera, second-shot a wedding, and got a job at a studio all within about 2 months. I shot my first wedding solo 6 months after that. Photos from that first wedding are still in my portfolio on this website. That was 6 years ago, and I've certainly learned and improved quite a bit since then. (And upgraded my equipment, shot for thousands of hours, moved to a big city, invested in things like insurance and advertising, photographed professionally in 10 states...etc)
The important part of being an artist, I would argue, is taste. It's not the only thing, but it's where you have to start. Hanna has it. She also has sense. She's exactly what I needed, and what my clients need. She's finding space for the non-stop stream of ideas I keep hurling at her. She is friendly and bright and exudes intelligence. The thing I have found to be my greatest asset in this business is my extroversion. My ability to intuitively connect with people and draw them out. To make people feel comfortable in front of the camera so they smile like they mean it. Whatever that is, Hanna has that too. Even after just six weeks of working together full time, I feel that growth would be impossible without her. We both agree that this is a partnership that is going to work well for a long time.
Oh, and I almost forgot to mention that she is GREAT at Photography. Check out her image as the headder in this recent post: http://libbynederweddings.com/blog/2014/2/9/dani-colby-denver-engagement-photography
As a bonus, we look a lot alike, so some of you may not notice when we trade places.