MEET ONE OF OUR TRUSTED VENDOR PARTNERS:
Clinton James Photography. We have been working with Clinton for about 5 years as one of our wedding photographers. Clinton is the invisible photographer that captures the emotion of the moment in an image, all while staying out of the scene. Clinton takes the time to get to know each client and really captures who they are while taking amazing photos to tell the entire story. He is a gentleman and professional, that respects the fact you have asked him to capture an important and very personal day. We believe this is very important when working in the wedding industry and what led us to recommend him to our clients as a trusted vendor.
Please describe your business and why or how you began.
I’m Clinton James and I’ve been shooting weddings for 20 years. Before picking up a camera I had no grand plan of being a self employed creative. After graduating with a degree in Philosophy, I was encouraged to travel to India. At the time, it didn’t sound very appealing. But, six months later I was on the ground in India with a backpack, a copy of The Bhagavad Gita and this old Nikkormat camera that my parents had given me for graduation.
As the trip unfolded, I noticed whenever I pulled the camera out, opportunities magically appeared. This was before cell phones and in the remote towns and villages, very few people had cameras. On many occasions, I’d pull out my camera to capture some street scene or a market, and a car would stop and an entire family would spill out onto the street. They would line up and look at me and smile and wait. Oh, you want me to take your picture!
And just as often if they lived nearby one person would take my arm and say, ‘come. My family is here’ and, even though I was a complete stranger, I would get invited into their homes. Over and over I would be invited into people’s lives, somehow they knew I was there to capture something important. They knew the story of their everyday lives was worthy of being witnessed.
I never set out to become a photographer. But when I returned from that trip, something had changed. The camera had become my medium for connecting with people and through that, I was able to create the art I wanted to share with the world.
In 2020 I will photograph my 500th wedding. After 500 weddings I have learned that chasing light and beauty and love are goals you can dedicate your life to and have no regrets. I also learned those three things (light, beauty and love) can be captured in a single photograph.
It’s been an honor to have so many couples and their families open their doors to me, a trusted stranger, in a very important moment in their lives and say, in one way or another ‘today there will be light and beauty and love. We trust you- go find it and capture it for us.”
Describe one new trend that you have incorporated within your product and, or service offering?
When I began my business, I studied other business models for creatives, looking for one that felt straight forward, in line with my values, and had a track record of success. Based on that research, I developed a very simple 3-point approach that guides everything I do:
- Create exceptional work
- Share that work widely
- Take impeccable care of my clients and those who want to be my client
Over the years, when considering how to evolve my business (irrespective of trends) I’ve stuck to these principles and they have served me well.
Please list and explain one skill set that you excel at related to your business.
One question I often get from couples in the planning process of their wedding is how I interact with guests and wedding parties in order to get the most memorable pictures. Sometimes the groom doesn’t feel like a ‘natural’ in front of the camera and would prefer to be spontaneous and unaware of the camera. Sometimes the bride prefers specific directions, especially for herself or for large groups and family members who need a more professional but assertive presence to move everyone along. Fortunately, I can do both.
How would you describe your design or creative process for producing your end product?
Most couples I collaborate with prefer an authentic, art-forward, unobtrusive approach to wedding photography. They want great pictures AND they want to enjoy their big day in style. With that goal, I coordinate with couples during the planning process to blend photography into their wedding timeline seamlessly.
Communicate at least one reason why you like working with Blue Wings Events, LLC.
Working with Angela and the staff at Blue Wings Events is always a pleasure. Angela is the conscientious, a quick problem solver (often so quick that you never knew there was a problem) and one of the most organized people I know. She has gained so much experience as a planner and designer and she uses that experience to create stress-free experiences for her clients and couples.
You can check out more of his work on his Instagram