Inspiration. As photographers, we all draw it from different places. As business owners, we all look to different sources for motivation. Being inspired is at the very core of being an artist and entrepreneur.

While no list could ever be exhaustive, we wanted to give you a quick highlight reel of some of our favorites. To help sort through, we have created 5 categories for inspiration and chosen an artist for each that we feel best exemplifies the characteristics of that topic.


Images—Jennifer Rozenbaum

Jennifer Rozenbaum runs New York’s premier boudoir photography studio, Jenerations. She is known for working with her clients to help them feel empowered and sexy and then capturing that feeling in her images. Jen tells us:

“Empowering women with a renewed sense of femininity and fearlessness is the inspiration and motivation behind Jenerations.”

Her work is magnetic and has been recognized with accolades from organizations such as AOL, Good Morning America, and Entrepreneur Magazine. Her ability to create a connection with her clients and allow them to show confidence in themselves enables her to create beautiful portraits. Her images are a source of inspiration for any photographer, regardless of shooting niche.


Social Media—Mike Allebach

In addition to creating beautiful images, knowing how to market them on social media is a vital part of a thriving photography business today. We think Mike Allebach, a wedding photographer based in Philadelphia, combines both traits the best. You get a sense of who his target client is from every online interaction you may have with him, summarized best by his About Me page:

“Quirky, colorful, creative, awesome people choose Allebach Photography. I have photographed offbeat, gay, trans, straight, straight-edge, roller girl, nerdy, steampunk, punk rock, rockabilly, tattooed, not-tattooed, interfaith and couples with disabilities. Some people give their weddings a label or a style. And some couples just celebrate marriage.”

That sentiment is echoed in all of his posts on social media. His sense of acceptance and the stories he wants to tell are mirrored in every Facebook post, Twitter update or Instagram image.

In addition to his Allebach Photography page, he runs the uber niche For photographers, he operates, a great resource for looking to expand upon branding in your business with practical advice. Mike truly practices what he preaches and is a great inspiration when you are looking to unify your photography business across all platforms.

Related: Stay Inspired – From the White House to Wedding Photography


Storytelling—Susan Stripling

Susan Stripling is a world-renowned wedding photographer. She has been published in Inside Weddings, Martha Stewart Weddings, Grace Ormonde Wedding Style, Bride and Bloom, Modern Bride, The New York Times, Elegant Bride, and Town and Country Weddings, as well as industry publications such as Rangefinder, Capture Magazine, and American Photo Magazine. Mostly, she is known for her ability to tell a story through her images. She describes her process:

“My love for weddings is a complex thing, born from and sustained by all that inspires me—my passion for a great story, a craving for lovely things, my desire to create beauty, and my BFA in theatre. I’ve been drawn to dream worlds since childhood, be it in the pages of a good book or the spectacular three-act play of an unfolding wedding day. Families coming together, the crisp drama of a perfect dress, that split second as a loving expression breaks across the face of a new husband—that’s why I’m a wedding photographer. It’s my job and my privilege to capture those sublime moments so you can cherish them forever.”

Susan is an amazing photographer to follow for inspiration in capturing the stories that reside in every moment.

Related: Get Inspired through Creative Live’s Photo Week 2014!


Education—Sue Bryce (Creative Live)

Sue Bryce is a very talented master photographer who dominated the photography scene in her native New Zealand before exploding into the US market as the most sought-after portrait photography instructor. Her US-based photography teaching began with her initial class on Creative Live—”Glamour Photography.” She has since toured the country, presenting in major markets through organizations such as WPPI and PPA. In addition, she has created numerous classes for Creative Live, and they continue to be some of the most requested classes in their diverse line-up.

Blaire deLaubenfels summed up the value of the education that Sue Bryce offers by saying:

“With nearly 25 years of experience making women look and feel beautiful, internationally renowned photographer Sue Bryce has changed the face of glamour photography. Using her signature photo and video techniques to educate photographers and empower women everywhere, Sue has become the world’s most celebrated and sought-after teacher of portrait photography.”


Artistry—Michelle Gardella

Named one of the top 30 photographers in the world in 2013 by Rangefinder Magazine, Michelle Gardella is a photographer known for her artistic quality. Her wedding photography has been featured in Vanity Fair Magazine, Martha Stewart Weddings, BRIDES Magazine, and Rangefinder Magazine, just to name a few. In addition to her wedding work, she is the creator of the popular Kickstarter campaign “River Story“, in which she creates a book from her portraits of empowering women. Her images bring an unmatched quality to them that is truly inspiring. As familiar with the pen as with the camera, she tells us about herself in her own words:

“I feel things so much, and experience things so profoundly, that sometimes the only way to really express how I see the world is through my images. I truly believe there is so much poetic power in the silence of things, if we just take a few moments to let the quiet sing.”

Feeling inspired? Share your beautiful images with the world! Continue to capture beautiful moments with your couples when you free yourself from post production and partner with a wedding photo company – your color correction will be taken care of, which means you can spend more time building relationships with your clients. To learn additional ways to reach your ideal clients, download our Guide to Marketing for Wedding Photographers!


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