Member profile of the month is Hillary McCormack!
Bio / A bit about your professional background
My name is Hillary and I’m a self-taught photographer currently finishing up my last year studying Fine Art at St. Thomas. I’ve always loved art, particularly digital mediums. Photography has always been a passion of mine since high school but never something I considered pursuing professionally until I was two years into an English major and hating every second of it. I had always taken pictures for friends and family, but since changing my major, I’ve been committed to developing my skills as a photographer.
Tell us about your business.
I’ve always been interested in portraiture, in the idea of capturing an emotion, tone, or idea in the image of a person. I’ve always considered there to be a split in photography: there is the commercial (the babies, the weddings, all that fun stuff), and the artistic (basically the stuff you don’t make money from). I try to merge the two, producing creative portraiture no matter who or what the subject.
Where do you look for inspiration?
Since childhood, I’ve always loved Renaissance art, particularly the Pre-Raphaelites. I like to read and watch movies too – photography is entirely visual, so images and videos really help. Colours really inspire me too – I like looking at swatches, associating them with moods and emotions and thinking about how I can incorporate them into my photos.
How do you get yourself inspired?
The internet is a photographer’s greatest resource, but photographing nature always helps too.
Who are some of your favourite artists in your field?
It’s a tie between Annie Leibovitz and Zhang Jingna, but lately I’ve been really interested in conceptual photographers like Alex Stoddard and Brooke Shaden.
What project have you worked on that you enjoyed most and why?
My latest venture has been into cosplay photography after photographing Animaritime this summer. Photographing costumes felt like more of a collaboration between artists, which was really interesting. I shot 25 shoots in 3 days, so I definitely learned a lot and was able to experiment with different shots.
Do you use Social Media for your business?
While I’ve kept a photography Tumblr for a while, I’ve been trying to incorporate using Facebook recently.
How has impacted your business?
Even though I don’t have the time I’d like to commit to it, there has definitely been a spike in interest in my work since creating a Facebook page, and my network has grown. It’s great to be able to link people directly to your work and connect with potential clients easily.
As a member of FFC, what do you hope to see the council achieve?
I’d love to see the FFC become a community for networking and collaborating.
What’s next for you?
Long term? Grad school. But for now, I’ve got lots of fun shoots booked that I am very excited for, as well as a couple personal projects on the side.