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We couldn’t think of a better way to quick off our Get to Know Our Team series. Today we are featuring a Happiness Ambassador and in house photographer, Mark. We interviewed Mark to share how he got started with photography and what tips he has to make our photographs better!

Boca de Tomatlan, Mexico - This photo captures a few of the many things I love about Mexico. The warmth. The leisurely pace of life. Eating aguachile on the beach. The tropical charm. This photo instantly brings all of those things to life for me.

Boca de Tomatlan, Mexico – This photo captures a few of the many things I love about Mexico. The warmth. The leisurely pace of life. Eating aguachile on the         beach. The tropical charm. This photo instantly brings all of those things to life for me.

When did you become interested in photography?

I had an internship in my early 20’s and the organization needed some photos taken for their website. They didn’t have anyone on staff that knew anything about photography. So, they just put a camera in my hands and turned me loose – and I was addicted!

What do you enjoy the most about taking photos?

I love how it’s a blending of science and art – the technical with the creative. It refuses to be categorized as one or the other! That’s so punk rock. 

Cecilia - This was taken at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. We were in Quito, Ecuador when the entire country went on lockdown without notice. We didn’t know how long it would be until we could get back to the US. A day? A month? 6 months? In the midst of all of the worrying, we still found time to enjoy a bottle of wine and have a few laughs.

Cecilia – This was taken at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic. We were in Quito, Ecuador when the entire country went on lockdown without notice. We didn’t know how long it would be until we could get back to the US. A day? A month? 6 months? In the midst of all of the worrying, we still found time to enjoy a bottle of wine and have a few laughs.

Do you have a favorite type of photography?

I enjoy lifestyle portraits. I love seeing people in their everyday environments doing ordinary things. It feels intimate and special – like they’re letting you in on a secret by giving you a glimpse of a very real moment in their life.

What is the most helpful tip you learned about taking photos?

This is a tough one! I’d say one of the more important things I learned when I was beginning my photography journey was to be careful to check your framing before you take a picture. Make sure that everything in the frame is intentional – and that it doesn’t look like you have things like trees or light posts growing out of your subject’s head. If the photo doesn’t look right, don’t be afraid to move your subject – or yourself – to get a better shot!
Also, if you are using a DSLR, I would highly recommend learning how to use it in manual mode. It will take a little bit of effort at first but it will radically change your photography for the better. 
Rafa - I took this at one of the frequent get-togethers I had with a group of friends in Mexico. I have great memories of those times - and the look on Rafa’s face in this picture perfectly captures the vibe of those events.

Rafa – I took this at one of the frequent get-togethers I had with a group of friends in Mexico. I have great memories of those times – and the look on Rafa’s face in this picture perfectly captures the vibe of those events.

 

What is your favorite service to edit your photos?

I’ve used Adobe Lightroom for years. It’s perfect for just about everything I need to do. And it is non-destructive so I don’t have to worry about saving a bunch of different versions of a photo – or worry about not being able to recover the original image. 

Any last tip or trick you want to share with us?

It’s not so much a tip as it is an encouragement…give the gift of photography! I love being able to capture a special moment in someone’s life with a quality photo and then give that to them as gift that will live on forever. It’s rewarding for me and often very meaningful to the recipient. So, give the gift of photography to people you love! And give it often! 
Gary - I was fortunate enough to meet Gary in Medellín, Colombia last year. You wouldn’t be able to tell from this picture but he is one of the funniest people you’ll ever met. We were hanging out on the rooftop of my apartment complex with a few friends. I brought my camera up and caught Gary looking quite cool and, uncharacteristically, serious.

Gary – I was fortunate enough to meet Gary in Medellín, Colombia last year. You wouldn’t be able to tell from this picture but he is one of the funniest people you’ll ever met. We were hanging out on the rooftop of my apartment complex with a few friends. I brought my camera up and caught Gary looking quite cool and, uncharacteristically, serious. 

Thank you, Mark, for sharing your fantastic photo tips and giving us a look into your creative world. Check out our SimplePrints app if you are in the market for printing out your photography. 
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