10 FUN FACTS ABOUT ME


 

My favorite hobby:

Well photography was my hobby but I made it a job 14 years ago. So, I had to go find some other fun stuff. I enjoy weightlifting, gardening, just about any sort of crafting and jewelry making. My tie-dying skills are off the hook. When I was in high school I used to sell custom tie-dyed t-shirts and beaded jewelry. Come to think of it, I've always been in business selling my art. I just realized that!

Party of five

I'll admit we live the untraditional lifestyle. But, we're an absolutely happy family just the same. The kids are 16, 13 and 10. In between being a taxi a business owner and a short order cook I try to find relax time any chance I can get. If you asked the kids where they wanted to go on vacation... I mean anywhere, every single time they’re going to say Las Vegas. I know. Where’s the culture, right?  I think it’s because my sister lives there. And they adore their auntie. And, I don’t know why but there’s nothing that makes them happier than a hotel and a pool. I thought we’d be the family that camps. But actually we're the family that hotels.

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Where I find my inspiration:

When I had my first baby I honest to goodness thought that I had the most beautiful baby in the world. I had no idea that every mother thought that about her children. I photographed my daughter all of the time. So, ultimately I draw my inspiration from the absolute admiration I have for my babies. I know now that every parent feels the way I do about their kiddos. I really think, what could be more special than creating art of your family? To me when I walk into a home that is decorated with pictures, it’s not just a house to me. It feels like a home filled with love.

In my free time:

I absolutely love music. My favorite thing ever is to go to concerts. So far I’ve seen Korn, Blink-182, Violent Femmes, No doubt, Garbage, Sting, Kiss, Cold Play, Smashing Pumpkins, The Expendables, The B-52s, Weezer, Dave Matthews Band, Passion Pit, Tomorrow’s Bad Seeds, Group Love, Psychedelic Furs, The Cure, Morrisey, Phish, Florence and the Machine, My Morning Jacket, Band of horses, Fleetwood Mac, Tool, Pucifer..... I know there’s more... I just can't think of right now.

My favorite artist

I have to say my favorite photographer is Robert Doisneau. Because more than anything I feel human connection when I look at his images. Of course I’ve got favorite painters like Van Gogh, Rembrandt and Kahlo but also my stepdad. Back in the day he was the definition of an eccentric artist. I really had no choice but to learn something about composition, color harmony, storytelling and raw emotion through his paintings. 

What I'm embarrassed to admit

If you looked at my personal Instagram, you’d probably think that I loved my pets more than my kids. It's just that my animals let me take pictures of them more than my kids do. But seriously. The pet to people ratio in my house is equal. And that, in my opinion is too many animals. We have two pit bulls (Kimura & Wade), one terrier (Chaz), and two cats (Mary Kittens & Mr. Banks.) It’s madness….Way too many.  Please let’s just keep this between us though. Okay? Shout out to Kahoos for making the best pet food on the planet though! I like to brag that my pets are pescatarian.

What drives me crazy

If I had to choose I would say summertime is my favorite season. I love the heat! But when it rains I embrace every minute of it. I look forward to rainy days. And if the sun comes out on a rainy day, it drives me nuts! If it’s going to be a rainy day. Then darn it, I want it to stay a rainy day. I don’t know, it’s just a thing I have. Also, even though I count down the days until Christmas. Absolutely no Christmas music in the summertime. And in all seriousness, smartphones. What a weird invention. I mean, I get that their purpose is to help people connect but at the same time they’ve created the biggest divided in human connection that I’ve ever seen. I just don’t get it.

What I'm afraid of

Honestly, the dark... I'm not afraid of spiders, I'm not afraid of heights, I don't have fear of airplanes. I don't struggle in close quarters. I'm not really afraid of anything. But put me in a dark room and forget it!

How I give back

Each year I volunteer my time at two elementary schools in Compton. The police department puts on a father-daughter dance for two schools. The girl’s dresses, hair and makeup, food, DJ and professional portraits are all donated. The girls will either bring a father important male role model or one of the police officers will be there escort. I take portraits of the girls and their escorts and create a printed package for them. I know that this is an extremely important time in their lives as they're being promoted into Middle School. Also, I donate time or service to as many nonprofit organizations as I can. Often you’ll find my gift cards at a local silent auction to raise money for a non-profit. Or I’ll photograph an event. If you have a non-profit organization contact me. I'd love to see how I can help.

What I don't do

I don't do weddings, events or parties. If there's going to be a wedding or a party, I want to be there to celebrate. I specialize in people portraits and portrait lighting. I did do weddings early in my photography career. And although I think I did a pretty nice job, It's just not for me. I have some friends that kill it at wedding photography and If you go to my friends and partners page, you'll find their website links there. 

Visit Me On Instagram @amydawnellephotography