Alpine Image Co.
Based in gorgeous Wanaka, Anna the ex-punk rocker, Jen the Mountain biker, Miles the kiwi bloke and Yaeh the organised Studio manager make up the talented The Alpine Image Co.
Where is your studio based?
We're based in beautiful Wanaka
Please introduce your team and their positions?
Anna Allan - Photographer
Jen Rayment - Photographer
Miles Allan - Photographer
Yaeh Tomonaga - Studio Manager
What are some of the positives about working in a team environment?
Having a team of photographers creates a really nice space where you can bounce ideas off each other and support each other. You can spread the workload so each person contributes their strengths. It works really well for us.
Tell us a little about your style of photography or the way you photograph.
Anna: 90% of our work is shooting weddings. As many couples travel to Wanaka and Queenstown to get married here, its important to most of them that we incorporate stunning shots of the landscape into their wedding photos. I specialized in documentary photography when I did my photography degree so I try to mix documentary images that tell the story of the day, with beautiful shots of the wedding party in the landscape.
Jen: Much the same as Anna has said above! I guess I try to let my style reflect the person or couple that I am photographing…. But of course there is always going to be a bit of that inner 'me' that comes out. For me a huge part of my 'style' is about getting on with couples… allowing them to feel comfortable and relaxed with you, so that you can create honest images for them. I try and shoot in the way that feels right at the time.
What gear do you use?
We have a pool of camera gear which we all dip into and fight over! Its all Canon gear - 5D Mk3's, 5D Mk2's and a selection of yummy lenses.
If you had to choose only one lens, what would it be? why?
Anna: Oh god……I would find it so hard to choose between the 85mm 1.2 or the 35mm 1.4. I LOVE the 85 but it's slow focusing and heavy…..so I would reluctantly have to say the 35 as its more user friendly …but Id have to kill you if you tried to take my 85 off me.
Jen: Ahh the age old question! Probably depends how I'm feeling on the day, but I'm very attached to the 35mm 1.4 or the 24mm 1.4.
What is/has been your greatest challenge as a photographer?
Anna: Probably being patient while I grew the business….. You have to be prepared to put in hours and hours of unpaid work to get a business off the ground, especially in these challenging times, getting systems in place, marketing, building relationships etc etc But its so worth it when it finally happens.
Jen: For me, one of the greatest challenges of being a photographer is wondering if I am good enough!!!
Anna: She is!
What do you feel has been your greatest photographic achievement to date?
Anna: Becoming a Master photographer of the NZIPP!! From ex punk rocker to master photographer……so proud!!
Jen: I recently was awarded a Gold with Distinction in the Wedding Classic category at the NZIPP awards. Needless to say that was pretty amazing for me. I wasn't expecting something like that to happen in a million years!
What would be your dream job or assignment to shoot?
Anna: Easy! To shoot a wedding in Venice! I was asked to shoot another photographers wedding in Venice a few years ago and it fell through. I'm going to make it happen one day, even if its my daughters' wedding!
Jen: I would love to shoot a wedding in Cuba. Could you imagine that?! It would be incredible. I'd also love to do a road-trip with my film camera across the US… and if anyone was willing to pay me to document it… well I wouldn't say no!
What tips or advice do you have for budding photographers?
Anna: Learn about light! Its almost like the more you learn, the more you realize there is to learn.
Jen: I'm not really sure I'm the best person to ask for advice, as I feel like I've been incredibly lucky with the way in which I got 'into' photography through Alpine Image Co. But if anything, keep taking photos…. keep enjoying what you are doing… and keep learning about light. Nothing beats getting out there whenever you can and creating memories that make you smile. Be that family, friends, or a beautiful landscape.
Can you briefly take us through your average day?
Anna: I usually start around 10 or 11, and head straight for the coffee machine. If I have work booked in I'll sort all my gear and head off to the job. More often than not, our work is over the hill in Queenstown, which I love as I never get tired of the drive over the Crown Range. If I have no work booked in, I'll get on with editing and post production work - there's always a backlog of jobs to be getting on with.
Jen: Most of our time, like the majority of photographers, isn't spend at weddings, but rather in front of the computer editing and keeping up with the endless task of blogging etc. So, on an average day I wake up and have a pot (yes… a pot!) of tea… head off to the studio, where I have another cup of tea with our Studio Manager Yaeh! Sometimes we chat about all things wedding-y for a little bit (we're both getting married next year…it's research!!!) then we launch into it. So it's full on post- production world with a little break to our local Sushi place at lunch, until the evening when I'll meet my fiancé and our dog for a bike ride before heading home for a glass of red!
In your opinion, what makes a good photograph?
Anna: Emotion. Definitely. I don't believe it has to be technically brilliant - If it moves you, it's a great photo.
Jen: At the risk of sounding like I don't have an opinion of my own… you can't really go wrong with Anna's answer!!!!
If you weren't a photographer, what would you be?
Anna: A ski bum! With a camera!
Jen: A sponsored down-hill mountain biker. Or not. But hey… this isn't a real life question is it! Hehe!
What do you enjoy doing to take a break from photography, what recharges you?
Anna: Wanaka's very social. If Im not working, Im usually skiing up Treble Cone with mates in the winter, or playing tennis, hanging out on the lake, or biking to the pub in the summer to enjoy a glass or three of the yummy local pinot.
Jen: Riding my bike fast downhill and scaring myself, being outdoors, British Columbia, surfing, camping, camp fires, cooking, baking bread, good friends, good wine and craft beer!
Who/what motivates or inspires you to keep doing what you do?
Anna: The best thing about our work is shooting people on the happiest day of their lives, the fact that they trust us to do a good job and the feedback we get at the end of it. I cant think of any other work that would be so fulfilling.
Jen: Not sure if this is really answering the question… but over the last year or so I've been shooting a lot more film, and it's pretty much all I use for my personal photography (well, that and the trusty iphone camera)! I've found that using film has really kept inspiring me to shoot more. You can't imagine how excited I get sending off a roll of film.. it's like Christmas when it's comes back, and it's so nice to be pushed out of the 'digital comfort zone'. It's these images that I take the most inspiration from, and they remind me what it is that I love about photography.
If you want to find out more about Alpine Image Co. take a look at their website or check out their Facebook page.