Interview with Ana Brandt
I am excited to bring up our next presenter, miss anna brandt, who taught the art of maternity photography so I'm very excited to have her with us and how are you doing and good on sunny california I'm doing great how can you not complain about sunny I love it I love it so let's talk briefly about your photo week course called the art of maternity photography what did you teach in it? Just the basics of transitional posing and using a fan and dressing a woman and just kind of was more of an introductory introductory course of pregnancy photography. Fantastic. And then of course we had you here for a full three day workshop let's hear about that? Yeah, that was intense. That was we did maternity wind a newborn, another day on the third day the spartan marketing and sales and motivation and discussion just a little bit of everything from all different areas it was a fantastic one. I watched a little bit of it and I am not at all a baby photographer but it was amazing some of the things t...
hat we learned what are some of the biggest questions that you get related to photography? Well, goodness I get questions around the world every day and it's amazing and I was a million today in brazil was e mailing me saying, how do you get babies into a deep sleep on it, it's. So funny because I converse with over fifty countries every week. And it's the same several questions number one is what camera do you use? What what lenses? The perfect lens, that's always the big one like that's, where the magic is right? And then the second is, how do you get the babies to sleep? Sleep, sleep, sleep, and then, you know, the third is how do I do it all and, you know, equipment, you know, I'm a cannon girl, I'm a mark three I was twenty four to seventy usm to lens, the fifty millimeter lens and on location the seventy two hundred millimeter lens, but I also I don't believe you need to have the most expensive camera. I'm not one of those people that believe that I bought used here for ten years, so, you know, use what you have and make it great, and then earn the money to afford the next camera that's kind of my philosophy. Second, the babies to sleep well, if you watched me three day course, it'll help you, theo hisses food people aren't paying attention to what the nursing mothers, air eating, and I have three babies that prove the theory that what a mama needs if she's nursing affects the baby and half the time if you could just teach mom to keep the baby awake and keep them bathed and, you know, eat comfortable foods and watch their formulas. If the formula feeding when they come for their session and you can get them in a very deep sleep and I'm going to our newborn session girl, not a four hour girls. So I I believe in getting him missing and then that's fascinating. The idea that it's what the mother is eating that's influencing how the baby is sleeping most people aren't thinking that far back. Those people are just like, what did you do two minutes ago to get it to sleep? Not what did you do? Hours ago? Yeah, and honestly, I didn't know any better either. Until I had a son who was up all night and I was crying. My pediatrician growing. What did I dio on? Dh she's like it's? Not what you did, it's. What did you eat on three kids? They all you know were affected in different ways. And even if it's their not nursing, if it's the formula, they're waiting. I mean, that affects two and even diaper rashes. What diaper they using, you know, the parents say, oh, they hate a diaper change that a light pole should go off what diaper you using they might be allergic to the diaper you know? So there's there's obviously a million things of why babies not sleeping but it's fascinating every week I get emails from brazil to israel to egypt to turkey and they're all saying why aren't the baby's sleeping and it's it's that's a big big island and then the third is how do I do it all and say every day I don't I don't do it all myself I have a team I have a crew my family helps me I have assistance and I don't do it all myself that's that's the easy one yeah and uh how do you get started finding that team that's kind of the question how do you how do you get into this like okay, I'm at the point where I can't do everything and there are things that are essential that aren't getting done how do you start finding that team? They're referent td jakes if you know him his phenomenal, he says. If if you're doing the job that somebody else can do, you're not fulfilling your life purpose so if you're sitting there just updating customer database but anyone can do that, why are you sitting there doing it? But can anyone pick up your camera and take the photos that are going to come from your eye in your vision? No so what you do is you sit down and you say what are all the things that I'm doing that anybody else khun d'oh and you make a list of those and if you can't afford it you go to the local colleges and you say can I enroll in your intern program and get students who not only would they love to do it they have to do it to graduate haven't get an internship and say you know these air the thing given the list of the things that you don't need to do this is what I need to do and you get them in there and then you've got one hundred twenty hours or whatever the hours they need to graduate to figure out is this the right fit? Are they you know what are they doing? You know I'm a control freak I would love to do everything myself but I have that quote and I say wait a minute what what is my what is my purpose my purposes to not just sitting file all day the way really loved to file any so I think if everybody just take us took a step back and my retouching I don't I don't need to clone out hands all day I can outsource that to somebody who can do that all day and maybe that's their life's purpose that's beautiful I love that I mean it kind of just goes back to almost what I was saying about the previous course that we watch if you're not finding joy in what you're doing, if that isn't the thing that is fulfilling you and really allowing you to do what is most important to you, whatever is your life's purpose, why are you doing it? Why not figure out howto have somebody else to do it so that you can focus on what is special about you? I love exactly. And if you look to every successful person in the world from oprah to the president, what are they really spending their time on? I could give it to you, it's not filing now. Absolutely not. I love that. Thank you for those thoughts. Let's, talk a little bit about what's kind of new with you and what's going on in your world right now. I know you had an interview recently in range finder magazine, and you actually mentioned something I thought was really interesting, which was your experience with youtube and with video, which is not something that most people think of when they think of newborn photography. Can you tell us a little bit about your experience with video on dh youtube? Sure and range finder called me just like two weeks ago, so the article's not out yet, but but it's it's good that you brought come up because it'll I'm looking for to seeing it basically the short version of how it started is seven or eight years ago, I literally started using a flip cam and photographing behind the scenes of pregnancy and newborn to share with other photographers because there really wasn't anything like that, and I was like, let me just share well, all these years special tickets even closer to nine years later, I have over a million views and fifteen thousand subscribers from all over the world, people just kept asking questions, asking questions, not sure I'll do another video. Well, here's, what started happening, people? One of the first things that really changed my whole life recently wass we had a call from afghanistan and his wife was having a baby here in california, he was looking for a photographer and he's an amateur photographer himself, so he loves to go on youtube just figure things out when he's not defending our country, and he found my youtube videos and started following my links and going to my website. And honestly, I got an email from him and I thought it was spam because he's, like I mean, knowing from afghanistan and like, write and so I just said, why don't you call the studio making appointment? He was like, well, it's a little hard, but I'll try I'm like, yeah, okay, forgot about, um, he calls the studio any books and he five for afghanistan to come and help his wife deliver a baby. And I was just the whole neighbor in session, I was still like, really? And he was like, yeah, I mean, how else would I have found you? Okay, so I start thinking maybe I should focus more on consumer videos showing behind the scenes because look there's a million newborn photographers out there. How do people find the neighbor and photographer? And then the half that you weren't photographers don't eat no photos of them, and you're supposed to bring your seven day old baby to a photographer, and you even know what they look like, let alone you pay this money and you get there. What if you can't stand the madonna? So I started thinking I'm in it switch the camera more on me and behind the scenes of a session because it takes a lot to go on a session and do more consumer videos, and I did create a second channel for that what happens? I get another call from a military family. The husband wife are in the army she's looking for a photographer in orange county, she's in another state. She sees my video she calls my husband. I found my photographer needs like who hears her video is to pretend you're the mom and you're in for any word session and there's so much going on, you don't even remember it, right? You're in this postpartum days, the dad's doesn't even remember what happens when you look back at a video so sorry you're fine, you're fine and all of a sudden to music you start seeing behind the scenes on the work and the magic that's involved in it, and then you add that with the stills, so you're looking, you're seeing the posing and the fluffing and the prepping and then boom, the image, the still pops up and you're like, wow, wow! And so we started saying, ok, this is going to be a gift for those pictures are baby plan because our baby but is not cheap, and they're paying a lot of money upfront and they're investing with me, so why not? I take part of that investment back, and this was my talk with range finders I was telling him like anything you have to give an investment back into your business. You know, when I start doing books nine years ago I was barely charging four hundred dollars for a book and barely making any money and it took years to figure out how to do it it's the same with video it's initially it's taking my videographer and testing it practicing and adding it, calling it, making it great and saying, ok, we're going to give this to our high end clients, then streamlining it so you can add it is a product is a value add on for your products and services beautiful. I love that there were so many things you just said, like, goodness, the part that I don't even consider was the idea that this is a family who has a newborn who they are, they might be a first time parent and are terrified don't know anything about it, and they're expected to go in and just hand their child over to a complete stranger, being able to see who you're working with learned their personality a little bit, at least even like you said, just get to know who they, what they look like that is beautiful and then being able tto be searchable findable you know, youtube is one of the if not the biggest at this point searched sites on the internet, and so having that number of people looking and being able to find it that's huge, I love that and then and then developing it into making it a product that you can offer that's beautiful. Thank you for sharing that really quick. We're running out of time here. What is new with you? What is going on in your life? Share is the big news. Uh, well, I'm launching a magazine, the art of pregnancy and newborn ty open we had one, years ago and I put it on the back shelf and because I get so many questions because of being on creative live I said it's time to bring it back. My husband is the writer he worked in magazines for years let's bring it back and printing digital so we posted the cover on the website. We're getting ready to launch it pretty soon. So I'm excited because it's gonna be solely focused on pregnancy newborn children the first year every issue excited about that and a personal note I going to take my cpp exam just to be like, why not? Why not? I'm a member. People say, why not? So, you know, just work and continually trying tio better myself. I believe it's a journey that you spend the rest of your life on, I will never be done, you know, and I don't think we ever should be, and so I'm always just trying teo, make myself a little better and just tryto continue to work on my own work that is fantastic. Thank you for joining us, anna. We really appreciate your time and again, thank you for all the teaching that you've done here. And we're excited to see the magazine as well.